Feb 21, 2022
Washington Summit to examine guest worker AEWR

The continued labor crisis being experienced requires action by Congress to provide stability and certainty to agriculture.

This includes a viable option to retain the current workforce and modernize the H-2A guest worker program, specifically addressing the skyrocketing Adverse Effect Wage Rate (AEWR).

As one of the National Potato Council’s (NPC) highest priority issues, the NPC holds a key leadership role with the Agriculture Workforce Coalition in seeking to press for legislative and regulatory changes to solve this crisis. On Wednesday, March 2, the NPC will bring in two policy experts from that coalition to address Summit attendees about the ongoing efforts by agriculture to move needed reforms through Congress and the administration.

Speakers will include:

  • Mary Nowak, Director, Government Affairs, National Council of Farmers Cooperatives
  • Jonathan Sarager, Director, Federal Government Affairs, Western Growers
  • Mike Wenkel, COO, National Potato Council

Check out the full agenda here.

Next executive committee up for vote

At the NPC’s Annual Meeting of the Voting Delegates, being held on Monday, Feb. 28 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. ET, the Nominating Committee will present the following slate of officers. Nominations will also be accepted from the floor.

  • Jared Balcom, Pasco, Washington: President
  • RJ Andrus, Idaho Falls, Idaho: First Vice President and Vice President, Legislative Affairs
  • Bob Mattive, Monte Vista, Colorado: Vice President, Environmental Affairs
  • Ted Tschirky, Pasco, Washington: Vice President, Trade Affairs
  • Dean Gibson, Paul, Idaho: Vice President, Grower Outreach and Industry Relations
  • Ben Sklarczyk, Johannesburg, Michigan: Vice President, Finance
  • Dominic LaJoie, Van Buren, Maine: Immediate Past President

Podcast examines how dietary guidelines will affect industry

Food insecurity, climate change, and sustainability are not words typically associated with the nutritional value of food. Even so, as USDA sets the stage to write their next Dietary Guidelines, activists are pushing to expand the federal government’s definition of what “nutrition” could mean to policymakers and consumers. At Potato Expo 2022, top experts in food policy sat down to talk about how anti-potato activists are trying to influence nutrition policy — and what the industry is doing to head them off at the pass.


  • Allie Graham, MS, RDN, Senior Director, Food Policy & Global Regulatory Affairs, Food Directions
  • Robert Guenther, Chief Public Policy Officer, International Fresh Produce Association

Download and subscribe here or search for “eye on potatoes” wherever you listen to podcasts.

The Eye on Potatoes Podcast is made possible by presenting sponsor Syngenta.

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