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Two new ed sessions announced for OGS

Two New Ed Sessions Announced for OGS
Pictured, left to right: Brise Tencer, Moderator and Executive Director at OFRF, Kim Horton, Gina Colfer, Larry Jacobs and Dr. Shriya Rangarajan.

Organic Grower Summit presented by Western Growers and OPN

MONTEREY, CA—September 28, 2023 – An ed session focused on a systematic approach to managing pests in organic agricultural systems and an interactive workshop offering insights into research by the Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF) and the UC Organic Agriculture Institute (OAI) have been announced as part of the educational program for the upcoming Organic Grower Summit (OGS) 2023 presented by Western Growers BB #:144734 and OPN BB #:338018, slated for November 29-30 in Monterey, CA.

“Roadmap to an Organic Sustainable Pest Management Future” will feature three industry experts discussing the ins and outs of organic pest management. Moderated by Gina Colfer, Sustainable Solutions PCA/CCA at Wilbur Ellis, the session will include panelists Kim Horton, Agronomy Manager at Taylor Farms; Mathew Grieshop, Director for the Cal Poly Center for Organic Production and Research; and Jo Ann Baumgartner, Executive Director at Wild Farm Alliance.

“A working group of 33 agricultural and urban industry members have been working to pave the way for California to develop the Roadmap for a Sustainable Pest Management (SPM) future,” said Colfer. “The SPM Roadmap builds on the concept of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) but with a broader consideration for environmental protection, human health, social equity, and economic vitality. The organic industry is poised to be industry leaders in this next phase for a SPM future. We need to train and offer solutions for the present and next generation of PCAs, farm managers, and industry leaders.”

A special interactive 90-minute ed session, “Understanding Evolving Production Challenges for Organic Growers,” will showcase findings from OFRF’s California Organic Research Agenda report as well as ongoing research at the University of California’s OAI.

The session will be moderated by Brise Tencer, Executive Director at OFRF. Panelists for the session will include Dr. Shriya Rangarajan, postdoctoral scholar with the OAI; Darryl Wong, Executive Director of the Center for Agroecology; and Larry Jacobs, President of Jacobs Farm del Cabo.

“Both OFRF and OAI regularly connect with organic growers to better understand their evolving needs and the tools and practices that best support organic growers,” said Tencer. “As part of this intensive ed session, attendees will hear from a panel of organic farmers and researchers about the immense value of farmer knowledge networks and the transformative power of researcher-producer collaborations. Facilitated Q&A and interactive breakout sessions will encourage growers to share their insights that can catapult their farm into a sustainable and prosperous future.”

The sixth annual Organic Grower Summit is designed to provide information vital to organic growers and producers as well as an overview of the opportunities and challenges in the production of organic fresh food.

Highlighting the two-day event is a sold-out trade show floor featuring soil amendment, ag tech, food safety, packaging, and equipment exhibitors who will have the opportunity to connect with organic field production staff, supply chain managers, pest management advisors, and food safety experts.

“OGS 2023 will provide up-to-date resources and information to support the continued success of organic producers, with an emphasis on the changing organic production landscape as well as the role of ag technology,” said Matt Seeley, CEO of Organic Produce Network. “From seed to soil to harvest, our goal is to present the most relevant and timely information on the most important subjects and issues facing organic production.”

OGS 2023 will be held November 29-30 at the Hyatt Regency Monterey Hotel & Spa in Monterey, California. Further details on the educational program, including session topics and speakers, will be released in the coming weeks. For more information on the sixth annual OGS, please visit

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About Organic Produce Network:

OPN is a marketing organization serving as the go-to resource for the organic fresh produce industry. The company’s mission is to inform and educate through a strong digital presence with an emphasis on original content and complemented by engaging live events that bring together various components of the organic food community. The OPN audience includes organic producers, handlers, distributors, processors, wholesalers, foodservice operators, and retailers. 

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About Western Growers

Founded in 1926, Western Growers represents local and regional family farmers growing fresh produce in Arizona, California, Colorado, and New Mexico. Our members and their workers provide over half the nation’s fresh fruits, vegetables, and tree nuts, including nearly half of America’s fresh organic produce. Some members also farm throughout the US and in other countries, so people have year-round access to nutritious food. For generations, we have provided variety and healthy choices to consumers. Connect with and learn more about Western Growers on our Twitter and Facebook.