Author Archives: Karen Ross, Secretary, California Department of Food and Agriculture

A sweet farewell – Climate Smart Agriculture Mission to Australia

New South Wales: One of our last stops in Australia was so fun – Ferrero Rocher, the world’s third largest confectionary!! Claudio Cavallini, general manager of the company’s Australian agriculture program, welcomed us to the 2,000-hectare property -a former cattle ranch … Continue reading

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Citrus Down Under – Climate Smart Agriculture Mission to Australia

New South Wales: Australian farmers grow some of the same specialty crops as we do in California, including citrus. Frank Mercuri, chairman of Pacific Fresh, hosted us for a tour of as citrus packing house and an orchard. Pacific Fresh is … Continue reading

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Impressions of a vast, dry continent – Climate Smart Agriculture Mission to Australia

New South Wales: On this day we left Canberra at 7am and traveled south and west to what is known as “irrigation country.” The scenery reminds me of a drive from Sacramento to Ione (Amador County). Our stops included a … Continue reading

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Climate Smart Agriculture Policy Mission – Secretary Ross and Ag delegation in Australia

CANBERRA, the Australian capital: A number of us were late in arriving to Canberra because of weather delays while traveling. So we made a quick turnaround to join up with the rest of the delegation and our hosts for day-one of … Continue reading

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More than a slogan – The urgent need to work together for a better water future

Earlier this week I joined people representing a diverse group of interests for a panel discussion about water. The event, in Clovis, was organized by Sustainable Conservation, and its title, The Common Good: Working Together for a Secure Water Future, represents … Continue reading

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Spray Safe program shows Ag’s commitment to safety, responsibility

I had an opportunity this week to travel to Santa Maria, where the Santa Barbara County agricultural commissioner‘s office, the Santa Barbara County Farm Bureau, and Allen Hancock College worked together to present the Spray Safe program for pesticide application. More than … Continue reading

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CA Grown floats shine at Tournament of Roses

I was honored and very pleased to be asked back to officiate the California Grown certification ceremonies for flowers on floats in this year’s Rose Parade.  You can’t help but get caught-up in the festive energy in Pasadena, and the … Continue reading

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‘By the Numbers’ – a look at the California Department of Food and Agriculture

We live in the age of data. From soil sensors to livestock identification, numbers and the patterns and trends they reveal are central to the way we work, both on the farm and here at the California Department of Food … Continue reading

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Giving Thanks, Giving Back

It takes a lot of hands to bring a crop to harvest, starting with farmers, farm workers and ranchers. They’re responsible for California’s ongoing status as the leading agricultural state in the country and one of the leading Ag economies … Continue reading

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Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory on the leading edge of research beneficial to agriculture

I was honored to have an opportunity this week to visit the world-class Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory and learn about some of the cutting-edge research underway that has value to agriculture. The Berkeley lab is an example of our lengthy and … Continue reading

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