Report from the United Fresh Washington Conference (September 12-14)

October 2, 2016

In preparation for the March on Capitol Hill, close to 500 representatives of the fresh produce sector held discussions on the changes needed in the current regulatory programs in support of a legal and viable workforce, the possible impact of trade 
agreements being negotiated (TPP and with the European Union), and the need to continue offering fresh fruits and vegetables in school meals. United Fresh is the US counterpart of CHC. CHC President Keith Kuhl and Executive Director Rebecca Lee attended this conference which provided ideas and preparation
 for our own Fall Harvest event in November.

This year’s messages conveyed to House Representatives and Senators during the March on Capitol Hill were:

– Child nutrition reauthorization: pass the Senate Agriculture Committee Child Nutrition bill that keeps the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable program ”Fresh” and protects the half cup of fruits and vegetables in school meals

– Immigration: Comprehensive immigration reform is still needed; stoppages in the federal agricultural guest worker program, H2A, cannot be tolerated anymore!

– Trade: Pass the TPP to bring trade opportunities to the fresh produce industry.