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

CDFA Secretary Karen Ross (center) with Santa Barbara County agricultural commissioner Cathy Fisher and Santa Barbara County Farm Bureau president Kevin Merrill

CDFA Secretary Karen Ross (center) with Santa Barbara County agricultural commissioner Cathy Fisher and Spray Safe event emcee Kevin Merrill

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 300 farm employers and employees participated in the half-day program. The commitment to this educational program was impressive because it was the first day of dry weather for quite some time and folks are anxious to harvest crops and get back into the fields!

Spray Safe is a series of best practices developed by growers and applicators to control drift, ensure worker safety, and protect public health. Over the years agriculture has seen significant changes in the products and practices applied to pest and plant disease management.

Farmers and pesticide applicators from Santa Barbara County gather for the Spray Safe presentation this week in Santa Maria.

Farmers, farm employees, and pesticide applicators from Santa Barbara County gather for the Spray Safe presentation this week in Santa Maria

But some things haven’t changed: The passion for high quality production; the commitment to being good neighbors; and, and the desire to continually learn how to do things better and safer. It was an honor to talk to the farmers and farmworkers who spent a part of their day on this safety training. I applaud the California Farm Bureau, county farm bureaus, Ag commissioners, and other local sponsors for their partnership to bring the Spray Safe program to more California farmers and employees.

 

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