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IFPA hires VP of government relations

International Fresh Produce Association logo.

April 28, 2022 Washington, DC — With policy and regulatory advocacy as one of its foundational strategic priorities, the International Fresh Produce Association BB #:378962 is pleased to announce it has enhanced its already strong government relations practice with the addition of Rebeckah Freeman Adcock as its new Vice President of U.S. Government Relations.

She joins a diverse team led by IFPA Chief Policy Officer Robert L. Guenther, whose staff is focused on issues ranging from nutrition and health (Mollie Van Lieu), labor/immigration (John Hollay), supply chain/environment (George Szcezpanski), and political affairs/grassroots (John Toner and Angela Tiwari).

“Rebeckah brings an incredible knowledge base on topics such as environmental law, water, and crop protection tools, all of which our members have said are critically important to their businesses,” said IFPA U.S. Government Relations Chair Brian Kocher, President & CEO at Calavo Growers.

“Those IFPA members coming to Washington for our Policy and Regulatory Forum next month will have an opportunity to meet Rebeckah and the full government relations team as we take our industry’s most important priorities to Capitol Hill.”

Prior to joining IFPA, Adcock was a former U.S. Department of Agriculture Administrator for Rural Development, Senior Advisor to USDA Secretary/Regulatory Officer, Senior Government Affairs Director for Crop Life America, and Lead Counsel to the U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.

In addition, International Fresh Produce Association has expanded the role of Mollie Van Lieu to Vice President of Nutrition and Health. Van Lieu will drive our nutrition and health portfolio for the association as we continue to look to expand our efforts to increase fresh produce consumption both domestically and internationally.

IFPA has also brought on Brandon Barnett as Government Relations Coordinator. Barnett brings several years of experience both on Capitol Hill as well as his work at several agriculture-based consulting groups. He graduated from the University of Florida in 2018 with a B.S. in Plant Science, Genetics Specialization. In 2016 he was recognized as a University Scholar, one of 50 awarded a grant to research volatile organic compounds in blueberries.

To enhance the organization’s internal team of policy and regulator experts, IFPA has teamed up with several outside partners that will deepen IFPA’s reach in policy and regulatory circles.

They are:

• AgTrade Strategies. Led by Sharon Bomer, who was the highest-ranking civil servant on agriculture in the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative. She served at USTR for 15 years leading agriculture trade negotiations for the United States, including with Canada, China, the European Union, India, Japan, Mexico, South Korea, and at the World Trade Organization.
• Cornerstone Government Affairs. For more than 18 years, organizations of all shapes and sizes have turned to Cornerstone for assistance with the formation, implementation and advancement of their federal government relations strategies. Cornerstone will focus their efforts on APHIS pest and disease, floral, gene-editing/plant breeding and crop protection tools.
• Invariant. One of Washington’s premier government relations firms, their clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies and trade associations to startups. Woman-owned bipartisan firm includes a team of 60 professionals with expertise in food and agriculture, trade and supply chain, financial services and tax; retail and consumer products; antitrust and liability; energy and environment; diversity and inclusion; labor and workforce; health care; and transportation and infrastructure.
• The Nourished Principles. Led by Stephanie Hodges (MS, MPH, RDN), an expert in nutrition policy, public health, and federal nutrition program, IFPA’s current work in health and nutrition will be further enhanced.

“We have doubled our investment in government advocacy and leadership. Our members are counting on us to build and maintain a positive business climate in the U.S. as well as global engagement to promote free and fair trade and standards harmonization. It is required to promote worldwide growth in consumption.” said IFPA CEO Cathy Burns. “This added talent and experience will complement our existing staff capabilities to ensure we deliver member value on these commitments to grow our members’ prosperity.”

About the International Fresh Produce Association (IFPA)
The International Fresh Produce Association (IFPA)?is the largest and most diverse international association serving the entire fresh produce and floral supply chain and the only to seamlessly integrate world-facing advocacy and industry-facing support. We exist to bring the industry together to create a vibrant future for all. We grow our member’s prosperity by conducting advocacy; connecting people and ideas; and offering guidance that allows us all to?take action?with purpose and confidence.? While IFPA is built on the legacy of United Fresh and Produce Marketing Association, it is not just a combination. It is transformational. Recognizing the industry required an even more powerful and unified voice, the leaders of the former United Fresh and Produce Marketing Association chose not to merge, but rather to create an entirely new organization to supersede their organizations, effective January 1, 2022.

Contact: Siobhan May, +1 (302) 781-5855