On Tuesday, 4 June, the Fresh Produce Association of the Americas (FPAA) and Farmers for Free Trade (FFT) hosted a panel to speak out about the value of trade, as well as the recent imposition of tariffs.
The panel consisted of speakers including Lance Jungmeyer from Fresh Produce Association of the Americas, Chris Ciruli from Ciruli Brothers Inc., Jaime Chamberlain from Chamberlain Distributing, Inc., Ricardo Crisantes from Wholesum Family Farms, Bruce Bracker, Supervisor of Santa Cruz County, and Angela Hofmann from Farmers for Free Trade.
Farmers for Free Trade has been traveling across the US speaking to small business, companies, etc. with the goal of highlighting voices and aspiring to show the importance of trade in the community.
“They strive to guide farmers to speak out to members of Congress, mayors, economic developers, supply chains, and they will continue to tell their story,” said Hofmann.
Chris Ciruli spoke out about the importance of providing U.S. consumers with fresh fruits and vegetables. A large portion of healthy food is imported from Mexico. Grapes, watermelons, cucumbers, mangoes, to name a few provide the US with healthy meals.
There are also several varieties of these healthy fruits and vegetables, which have been created through the hard work of produce companies and seed breeders throughout the past 100-plus years.
“Through Nogales, Arizona we have been importing Mexican fruits and vegetables to North American consumers for over a century and we are an extremely proud group of people and individuals who bring these fruits and vegetables to American tables, we take our jobs extremely serious and it’s a responsibility we take and we know what we are bringing to the US, it is our mission is to deliver our products to American consumers,” said Jaime Chamberlain.
Lance Jungmeyer spoke out about the importance of produce in Santa Cruz County, “Produce is about 25 per cent of the jobs in this county, there’s a lot of jobs and we need these jobs and these employers here.”