Mar 11, 2020
Appointments set for Michigan cherry, tree fruit and beverage groups

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has announced the following appointments to the Michigan Cherry Committee, Michigan Tree Fruit Commission and the Michigan Craft Beverage Council.

Michigan Cherry Committee

Paul D. Hubbell, of Williamsburg, is the owner of Orchard View Farms and president of the Grand Traverse Fruit Growers’ Council. Hubbell is appointed to represent District 1 sweet cherry growers for a term commencing March 2, 2020 and expiring Feb.1, 2023. He succeeds Isaiah Wunsch whose term expired Feb. 1, 2020.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer

Andrew J. Riley, of Mears, is the manager of Riley Orchards Inc. and president of West Central Michigan Horticultural Research Inc. Riley is reappointed torepresent District 2 tart cherry growers for a term commencing March 2, 2020 and expiring Feb. 1, 2023.

David C. Smeltzer, of Bear Lake, is the owner of West Wind Orchards, LLC. and the current chairman of the Michigan Cherry Committee. Smeltzer is reappointed to represent District 1 tart cherry growers for a term commencing March 2, 2020 and expiring Feb. 1, 2023.

The Michigan Cherry Committee was developed for the purpose of improving the economic position of the Michigan red tart and sweet cherry growers by creating greater marketing opportunities for their fruit. The committee conducts advertising and promotion programs, assembles and disseminates market information, and supports research into new marketing methods.

These appointments are subject to the advice and consent of the Senate.

Michigan Tree Fruit Commission

Fred L. Koenigshof, of Coloma, is the owner of K & K Farms where he grows apples, peaches, blackberries, and raspberries. Koenigshof is reappointed to represent District 3 growers for a term commencing March 2, 2020 and expiring March 1, 2023.

Trever G. Meachum, of Hartford, is the production manager and partner for High Acres Fruit Farm where they grow apples, strawberries, plums and grapes. Meachum is appointed to represent District 3 growers for a term commencing March 2, 2020 and expiring March 1, 2021. He succeeds William Teichman who has resigned.

Mark A. Miezio, of Suttons Bay, is the president of Cherry Bay Orchards where they grow cherries, apples, pears and grapes. Miezio is appointed to represent District 1 growers for a term commencing March 2, 2020 and expiring March 1, 2022. He succeeds Travis Bratschi who has resigned.

Charles A. Rasch, of Conklin, is the owner of Windy Ridge Orchard, LLC. where he grows apples and peaches. Rasch is appointed to represent District 2 growers for a term commencing March 2, 2020 and expiring March 1, 2021. He succeeds Christopher Kropf who has resigned.

Steve Thome, of Comstock Park, is a member of his family’s apple farm, Thome Orchards, LLC. Thome is reappointed to represent District 2 growers for a term commencing March 2, 2020 and expiring March 1, 2023.

Bruce Veliquette, of Kewadin, is the owner and manager of his family’s cherry farm, Cherry Ke Inc. Veliquette is appointed to represent District 1 growers for a term commencing March 2, 2020 and expiring March 1, 2023. He succeeds Rick Slayer whose term expires March 1, 2020.

The Michigan Tree Fruit Commission was created pursuant to the Agricultural Commodities Marketing Act for the purpose of improving the economic position and competitiveness of the Michigan tree fruit industry.

These appointments are subject to the advice and consent of the Senate.

Michigan Craft Beverage Council

Larry J. Bell, of Kalamazoo, is the founder and president of Bell’s Brewery. Mr. Bell is appointed to represent large brewers for a term commencing March 2, 2020 and expiring September 30, 2020. He succeeds Bradley Stevenson who has resigned.

The Michigan Craft Beverage Council was created to replace the Grape and Wine Industry Council. The council will award grants for research into winemaking, hops, barley, beer and spirits; conduct market surveys and analysis; and offer other programs that encourage the agricultural elements related to Michigan’s craft beverage industries. The council’s activities are funded exclusively by non-retail, non-wholesale liquor license fees.

This appointment is not subject to the advice and consent of the Senate.





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