Cherry farming turns sour amid Australian water shortage | Employees rate Wegmans, Publix as top workplaces | Demand drives up flower prices for Valentine's Day
February 15, 2019
PMA SmartBrief
Global news for the produce and floral industry
Global Connections
Cherry farming turns sour amid Australian water shortage
Cherry farming turns sour amid Australian water shortage
(Nicolas Tucat/AFP/Getty Images)
Soaring water prices in the Australian state of Victoria have forced at least one cherry farmer to destroy nearly 3,500 trees and consider closing down for good. The shortage and high prices are also taking a toll on other area industries, notably dairy, rice and cotton.
ABC (Australia) (2/14) 
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Employees rate Wegmans, Publix as top workplaces
Employees rate Wegmans, Publix as top workplaces
Wegmans, Publix and Nugget Markets again have been honored among the 100 Best Companies To Work For by Fortune magazine and consultants Great Places to Work. "There is nothing more important to us than being a great place to work for all," said Wegmans President and CEO Colleen Wegman.
Progressive Grocer (2/14) 
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Demand drives up flower prices for Valentine's Day
Demand drives up flower prices for Valentine's Day
(Dibyangshu Sarkar/AFP/Getty Images)
Retail prices on roses and other flowers soar around Valentine's Day as the sudden surge in demand pushes logistics systems to their limits and drives up costs. "It's really expensive just to get them to the market," Texas A&M University horticulture professor Charles Hall said.
KDRV-TV (Medford, Ore.)/CNN (2/14) 
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Tyson to debut plant-based meat alternative this year
Tyson to debut plant-based meat alternative this year
(Tyson Foods)
Tyson Foods will roll out plant-based meat alternatives during 2019, said Sally Grimes, president of prepared foods. "We want to have choices for those consumers," Grimes said of shoppers who are seeking meat-free options.
The Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model) (2/13) 
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SmartBrief Originals
Most Clicked: Take a look at this week's hottest food and beverage industry stories with SmartBrief
Glitter cereal, "Jungle" Jim drew readers this week
Caticorn Cereal, a new Kellogg product featuring edible glitter, topped this week's top 10 list, and readers were also drawn in by an interview with "Jungle" Jim Bonaminio, founder and CEO of Cincinnati's Jungle Jim's International Market. A story about how restaurants are adapting in the age of delivery also rated with SmartBrief readers this week.
SmartBrief/Food & Beverage (2/15) 
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Science & Technology
Living Greens Farm touts water-saving aeroponic system
Living Greens Farm will expand into a 60,000-square-foot space that will allow the Minnesota-based aeroponic growing system to broaden distribution of its greens to more states. The patented system will save 24 million gallons of water and almost 1 million pounds of greenhouse gases in a year, the company said.
The Packer (Lenexa, Kan.) (2/14) 
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Public Affairs
USDA sanctions produce businesses under PACA
Four produce companies have been sanctioned by the USDA after failing to pay damages under the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act. PACA supplies a method for handling contract disputes in the industry and can result in restitution paid by parties that don't fulfill contractual obligations.
AndNowUKnow (2/14) 
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N.D. Senate considers food insecurity study
The North Dakota Senate is considering a bill to study food insecurity, as 15% of the state's rural grocery stores have closed over the past five years. A registered dietitian told a Senate agriculture committee that children and adults have poorer health that can increase the risk of heart disease and diabetes if they live in a food desert.
KFYR-TV (Bismarck, N.D.) (2/14) 
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Industry Talent – Center for Growing Talent
Balance out negative thoughts with positive ones
Some people are prone to focusing only on the bad things, and one way to combat this is by examining where those feelings come from and then balancing them with positive thoughts, writes psychotherapist F. Diane Barth. "Researchers have found that the optimal ratio of positive to negative is five to one in a happy marriage, and a little more than five and a half to one in a hard-working, successful business team," Barth argues.
Psychology Today (2/10) 
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React quickly, but also make time to reflect
Effective leaders use both a reflexive mindset, which allows for quick decisions in a fast-paced environment, and a reflective mindset, which looks at the big picture. "Greater reflective leadership may be the way forward, along with the argument for going a little slower now so we can go much faster in the future," writes Julie Winkle Giulioni.
SmartBrief/Leadership (2/14) 
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PMA News
PMA to host FDA webinars on FSMA
PMA, along with United Fresh, Western Growers and NSAC, will host FDA for three webinars on the Food Safety Modernization Act on Feb. 28 and March 1. The two webinars on Feb. 28 will address the Produce Rule and Fresh Cut draft guidance documents consecutively. The final webinar on March 1 will address produce safety rule inspections. All three webinars are 60 minutes and will be recorded. Registration is capped at 500 attendees per webinar.
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Executive Leadership Exchange brings produce, floral execs to the table at SXSW
Center for Growing Talent is hosting this year's Executive Leadership Exchange in conjunction with SXSW by inviting 50 C-Suite members to attend 2 days of curated sessions with the final day spent as an immersion day at retailer H-E-B with structured activities and discussion. Executives will receive an observation, key learning and infusion plan packed with insight and best practices from the SXSW experience to help leverage their own leadership style and next steps, inspiring new ideas for their own organization. If you're in the C-Suite, sign up to join the conversation.
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longest-serving congressperson in American history
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