USDA Announces New Board Members to Hass Avocado Board
New Board Members Announced by the USDA in November and New Executive Committee Members Announced by Hass Avocado Board in Early December
On Thursday November 19th, the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced the appointment of 11 members to the Hass Avocado Board (HAB). Appointed are three producer members, three producer alternates, two importer members and two importer alternates to fill three-year terms beginning Nov. 1, 2020, and expiring on Oct. 31, 2023, and one producer alternate to fill the remainder of the term which expires on Oct. 31, 2021.
Members and alternates newly appointed to serve are:
- Susan V. Pinkerton, Ventura, California (Producer Member)
- Ben Van Der Kar, Carpinteria, California (Producer Member)
- CJ Shade, Ojai, California (Producer Member)
- William Carleton, Carpinteria, California (Producer Alternate)
- Jeff Dickinson, Fallbrook, California (Producer Alternate)
- Kimberlin Brown Pelzer, Fallbrook, California (Producer Alternate)
- Keith Slattery, San Clemente, California (Producer Alternate 1-year term)
- Jorge A. Hernandez, McAllen, Texas (Importer Member)
- Sergio Chavez, Lake Elsinore, California (Importer Member)
- Andrew Bruno, Newbury Park, California (Importer Alternate)
- Peter Shore, Ojai, California (Importer Alternate)
HAB has 12 members, which include seven producer members, two importer members and three producer or importer members who serve in swing seats. Each member has an alternate.
Following these appointments, at the Hass Avocado Board’s new member seating event held on December 1, 2020, HAB announced two producers and two importers have been seated to HAB’s Executive Committee.
Newly seated HAB executive committee members include:
Importer Jorge Hernandez as Chairman
Producer Salvador Dominguez as Vice-Chairman
Producer Ben Van Der Kar as Secretary
Importer David Fausset as Treasurer
“I am honored to continue supporting the work of HAB alongside these respected industry members seated to the executive committee,” said HAB Chairman Jorge Hernandez. “We know HAB’s success truly depends on the leadership of our board members and we look forward to supporting HAB’s vision of making fresh Hass avocados America’s most popular fruit by 2025.”
As the only independent avocado organization, HAB’s goal is to equip the entire industry for success. The executive committee will play a pivotal role in implementing HAB’s new 2021-2025 strategic plan, which includes strategies, objectives and five-year working goals across each of five strategic priority areas:
Business Support Tools and Information
Industry Engagement and Leadership
For the industry, HAB strives to be a catalyst for action and a reason to be confident. All industry members are encouraged to register here to view timely industry updates and access tools that will help facilitate the decision-making process for their avocado business.
Early in the new year, the Hass Avocado Board added a Sustainability Task Force to its roster of standing and special committees. During the 5 year (2021-2025) strategic planning process in 2020 the Board of Directors changed the focus of our previous sustainability efforts to that of a more core value program that the Board, and the industry must embrace as we move into the future.
Believe it or not, but the total volume of avocado fruit sold in the U.S. ROSE by 6.1% in 2020, from 2.492 billion pounds in 2019 to 2.644 billion pounds at the end of the year. One could have imagined in late March of this past year, that the industry would be seriously and financially devastated by the public health crisis we have been dealing with and the catastrophic impact it initially had on food distribution, and the dramatic impact that it had, and continues to have on the entire food service industry.
February was American Heart Month and, as in previous years, the Hass Avocado Board engaged with a marketing and communications campaign to promote the nutrition message and raise awareness on how including delicious avocados in everyday healthy eating plans can provide a whole food source of naturally good fats, fiber and other important nutrients that can reduce the risk for heart disease.