Friendly, long-term relationships between growers and processors are critical to the growers' success and also to the CTGA, which works with dozens of processors throughout the State on behalf of the growers. CTGA sets the price and terms for sale for the annual crop delivery. Grower support gives the CTGA the strength to successfully meet its goals, year in and year out.
In the tomato industry, information is everything. The CTGA keeps growers up to date on issues that affect the farming business through meetings, newsletters and special correspondence. This communication briefs members on industry events and the impact of these events on growers.
In 2006, the CTGA led the formation of the Tomato Products Wellness Council (TPWC), which is a voluntary organization funded by growers, processors and branded marketers. TPWC's mission: "To increase the consumption of processed tomatoes through facilitation of pertinent collaborative research and generic communication." To succeed in its goal, the TPWC will fund clinical research which will be supported by targeted public relations. The CTGA is the largest funder and its other members include the major branded marketers from the US, Europe and Japan; independent processors from California and Indiana; and Canadian and Australian grower organizations.
With less than three percent of the population involved in farming, farmers' needs are no longer high priorities for legislators. From Sacramento to Washington D.C., politicians are making decisions that directly affect growers' business. The CTGA actively lobbies to protect growers' interests in the areas of water, labor, pesticides, taxation, transportation, trade and land use.
After the growers' hard work and the expense of raising a crop, fair grading is essential. The CTGA's original charter mission was to ensure a fair and impartial grading system. For this reason, the CTGA worked to form the California Processing Tomato Advisory Board and continues to be involved in this service.
Scientific and technological discoveries allow growers to prosper in the highly competitive global tomato business. In conjunction with the California Tomato Research Institute and private and public researches, the CTGA supports and assists with a broad range of tomato-related research efforts. This research gives the grower the edge to produce a tomato crop second to none.
Daily, you feel the growing pressure to produce tomatoes with a minimum use of chemical inputs. In light of the decreasing list of acceptable chemicals, CTGA helps growers explore alternatives such as integrated pest management techniques. Through use of surveys and public relations efforts with the Processed Tomato Foundation, we have taken a leading role in assuring consumers that tomatoes are wholesome, nutritious and safe. And, recognizing the place of chemicals on the farm, we are working to preserve those inputs critical to your operations.