Jan 4, 2024
IFPA cites 10 key 2023 impacts

The International Fresh Produce Association (IFPA) is focusing on consumer health, the planet and Farm Bill policies among the 10 key issues outlined in its Annual Impact Report.

“We do so much more together as an association than any individual or company can do on their own,” Cathy Burns, IFPA CEO, said in a news release. “Our members amplified their voice in government and cultural advocacy to grow consumption. They expanded connections and business opportunities. They leveraged education and leadership development to grow their companies.

Cathy Burns

“And they contributed to sustainability work on packaging, climate change, and regenerative agriculture,” Burns said in the release. “All of this in service to their mission to grow a healthier world.”

10 key impacts

Reflecting on the association’s work in 2023, Burns noted it was difficult to limit the list to only 10 items.

“There were so many accomplishments, including record-breaking events that bring members together to learn, connect and do business,” she said in the release. “But we disciplined ourselves to whittle the list down to these 10.”  

The Annual Impact Report issues are:

  • Advocating for produce prescriptions to improve consumer health and boost produce sales.
  • Calling for systems thinking and risk-based approaches to solutions around Cyclospora as a public health threat. 
  • Collaborating with the Delta USDA Regional Food Business Center to support underserved, disadvantaged farmers and business owners in the Southeastern U.S. 
  • Urging a structure and leadership model for the Food and Drug Administration that better serves the produce industry. 
  • Admitting a second cohort to IFPA’s Fresh Field Catalyst Accelerator to advance ready-to-market, climate-smart solutions . 
  • Encouraging the use of climate-smart practices through a USDA Climate-Smart Commodities Grant .
  • Striving to secure new programs, policies, and resources in the U.S. Farm Bill that foster innovation, increase consumption, and provide industry tools and technologies.
  • Urging exemptions on proposed plastic packaging rules in Canada that would threaten industry’s efforts to make produce more affordable, safe, and accessible. 
  • Advancing members’ work on Diversity, Equity & Inclusion with a free, online toolkit .
  • Participating in the COP28 climate change conference that brings together world leaders to find sustainability solutions.

“None of this impact is possible without significant work from IFPA members,” Burns said in the release. “That’s the power of an association — gathering voices and expertise that allow us to act on our priorities.

“I’m so grateful to members who engage with IFPA to advance our mission,” she said. “We know fresh produce and floral are the key to solving some of the world’s most pressing problems, and the work our members did in 2023 exemplifies that.” 

Details on IFPA’s Annual Impact Report are available online.

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