Watermelon Standards Need Your Supporting Comments


Log-on Today and Support the Updates. The National Watermelon Association formed a Grade Standards Committee 13 months ago to work with USDA to modernize the grade standards and update the photo library to both reflect the varieties and business of today.  That effort, chaired by Jordan Carter of Cordele, Georgia, has accomplished as much as possible, even with the 2020 shut-down and travel limitations.  Now that the country is beginning to reopen, it is time to get the ball rolling again.

A Watermelon Proposed Notice was published in the Federal Register on Thursday, March 11 with a 60-day period to submit comments.  After the submission period closes, and it is determined that the sum of the comments support the revisions, and there are no further revisions to be made, USDA will develop a Final Notice and send it to the Federal Register.  If all goes well, possibly by late summer, the revisions will become effective. 


A National Lumber Shortage is Disrupting Pallet Markets
- - Do You Have A Backup Plan? - -

The coronavirus pandemic has caused significant shifts throughout the supply chain that have affected almost every part of our daily lives.  Included in that change is the lumber market, which is scrambling to meet the needs of their customers.  With home building at its peak with tremendous lumber demands, wood has become a premium. 



Worker Compensation Program with H2-A Workers

The National Coalition of Agricultural Employers (NCAE) will hold a webinar titled, "Best Practices and Strategies to Avoid Common Pitfalls in Your Workers’ Compensation Program with H-2A Employees".  The press release explaining the session is available.  Sign up here.




Five reasons why US faces chronic crisis at border

Conditions on the southwest border represent a serious political challenge to President Biden, with illegal crossings and asylum requests increasing significantly in March.  The situation mirrors immigration flashpoints such as the unaccompanied minor crises faced by former President Trump in 2019 and former President Obama in 2014.



Guatemala Expands H2-A Worker Access

Joined in a ZOOM call Guatemala’s Ambassador to the USA – Alfonso Quinonez, Minister of Labor – Rodriguez Pellecer and USAID’s Anu Rajaraman, NCAE and a contingent from U.S. Agriculture (including the NWA) learned about their country’s efforts to expand the H2-A worker base coming to the U.S.  Their original goal of sending 500 workers in 2021 has exceeded 600 as of March 31st.  With full vetting and background checks, the Guatemalan government is very interested in offering their countrymen for work here in the USA.  You can access the power-point presentation here. Please click here for more information.