Almond Update: International Program Shines Positive Light on Almond Production

Brian GermanAlmond Update, News from our Sponsors

Almond production is highlighted in a program from BBC that is airing all over the world. In an episode of the series Green Planet, almonds are featured as an example of interactions between humans and plants. Working with the BBC natural history unit, the Almond Board of California (ABC) helped coordinate industry members to be featured in the episode. Senior Manager of Reputation Management & Sustainability Communications at ABC, Danielle Veenstra said it was a good opportunity to emphasize some of the stewardship accomplishments of the industry on an international platform.

Almond production

“There’s misperceptions out there about how almonds are grown, and we wanted to make sure that we were represented fairly,” Veenstra explained. “I think we ended up really building a great relationship with the production team, with the videographers that were out here, and helping to show them what it is that we do.”

The BBC production team spent three weeks in multiple almond orchards capturing footage of bloom. Much of the focus on almond production revolves around pollination and bee health. One of the farmers, Christine Gemperle, is also featured on screen discussing cover crops and their role in adding biodiversity to her operation. Veenstra noted that the episode also touches on other things like the size and scope of the industry. “They talk about things that people might be concerned about, but they also talk about how the industry is working to improve and to be good hosts to pollinators all year round,” said Veenstra.

The episode has already aired in the United Kingdom and is scheduled to air in the U.S. on August 3 on PBS affiliates. Veenstra said almonds are featured twice during the episode and that the industry is represented well. “We’re just really glad, that in an opportunity like this which we do not control – we have no editorial control over this, they could say whatever they’d like – but I think they really gave us a fair shake and portrayed the industry positively on such a global scale,” Veenstra noted.

Listen to Veenstra’s interview below.

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Brian German

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Ag News Director, AgNet West