Representatives from the Almond Board of California (ABC) recently spent some time in international markets learning about other countries’ production and highlighting the value of California Almonds. Stops were made in Spain, Portugal, India, and Dubai. ABC President and CEO Richard Waycott said it was the first time he’s had an opportunity to represent the industry outside of the U.S. since February of 2020. Nine days were spent observing some of the new production areas of Spain and how the new dam in Portugal is impacting the development of increasing agricultural acreage.
“We’ll be writing up a full report on that and be able to predict a little bit better in terms of what the increase will be in, let’s call it ‘national EU production,’ versus where they’ve been over the last 20-30 years,” Waycott noted. “That will have an influence ultimately on what market opportunities exist for California almonds in Europe and obviously the Almond Board of California’s investments in market development there.”
An industry conference in India was also part of the trip. Waycott said that India is by far the largest export market for California almonds, with significant future growth potential. The conference brings together about 200 industry members from across the country for a discussion of a variety of topics.
“We spend about a half a day with them covering the current situation in California and the different market access issues we’re having in India,” Waycott explained. “We cover our consumer and trade development programs and just have a general discussion and exchange with the Indian industry on the present and future.”
Finally, as part of the trip to international markets, ABC also had a presence at the World Nut and Dried Fruit Congress in Dubai. Waycott and ABC Chairman Brian Wahlbrink gave a presentation on promotional efforts underway, including the partnership with Marvel Studios. Waycott noted that through their efforts, along with industry reports being released over the course of the event, California almonds were “very much top of mind for all of the worldwide audience that was gathered there.”
Listen to Waycott’s interview below.