The California Seed Association (CSA) recently held its 79th Annual Convention in Carlsbad where members gathered to hear important updates on what is happening in the industry and discuss priorities for the future. During the annual meeting, industry members were presented with information on the association’s activities over the past year and detailed plans for what will be needed moving forward.
“Over a number of years there’s been a lot of consolidation in the seed business and the seed industry,” said CSA Executive Vice President Chris Zanobini. “Even with that, the California Seed Association continues to grow its membership and continues to stay very relevant in what’s going on in our industry.”
As with other sectors of the farming business, there is a focus on generating interest in younger individuals to help maintain the success of the industry. “It’s critically important that we all work together to develop the next generation of seed industry professionals and I think it’s a common theme across all of agriculture and I think all businesses,” said Zanobini. “We’ve really got to look to the next generation of who’s going to lead our businesses and our organizations.”
Zanobini noted that CSA offers several programs and incentives such as scholarships to help develop the next generation of the industry. “We also do a number of student seed tours; one in the fall and one in the spring. We’re working on different mentorship programs, seed ambassadors and really trying to get people to bring along individuals to become interested and develop in the seed industry,” Zanobini said.
Along with ensuring the future of the industry is in good hands, CSA is also looking toward the latest technological advances in seed technology. “We refer to it as seed innovation and it’s really looking at the next generation of how we’re going to develop the next and best seeds to hopefully develop the best food in the world,” said Zanobini.
Listen to the interview below.