Planting Seeds - Food & Farming News from CDFA

Agriculture’s impressive leadership on display at GEELA awards

CDFA Secretary Karen Ross (second from left) with Fresno Assemblymember Dr. Joaquin Arambula (far left) and representatives of the Central Valley’s Terranova Ranch at last week’s GEELA ceremony in Sacramento.

Each year Governor Brown sponsors GEELA, the Governor’s Environmental and Economic Leadership Awards, an event to recognize individuals and organizations for exceptional achievements in conservation and environmental stewardship. It is the state’s highest environmental honor.

At the annual GEELA awards ceremony last week in Sacramento, it was my pleasure to help honor several great recipients with connections to agriculture:

Stone Edge Farm Estate Vineyards and Winery of Sonoma County was recognized for for its MicroGrid Project, which uses advanced technology to generate, store and distribute clean energy to its property and beyond.

California Safe Soil – This company from Sacramento County utilizes innovative technology that recycles organic food waste into fertilizer and feed for agricultural uses.

Terranova Ranch of Fresno County, was honored for for pioneering and expanding the practice of on-farm groundwater recharge – intentionally flooding fields with captured floodwater to replenish depleted aquifers.

Lystek International Limited – this Solano County company was recognized for a process that transforms municipal wastewater sludge into a nutrient-rich biofertilizer that revitalizes soils and increases crop yield.

Insight Garden Program – This is an Alameda County program with an innovative curriculum that combines environmental education with vocational gardening, food production and landscaping training in California prisons.

Agriculture has great stories to tell! Programs like GEELA bring those stories to the forefront. I urge all of our farmers and ranchers to consider seeking GEELA recognition in the years ahead.

GEELA is a partnership with Cal-EPA, CDFA, the Natural Resources Agency, the Labor and Workforce Development Agency, the Health and Human Services Agency, the State Transportation Agency, and the Business, Consumer Services and Housing Agency.



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