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Almond Conference Offers Many Venues for Interacting with Researchers on Timely Topics [with audio]

This year’s Almond Conference, to be held Dec. 3–5 in Sacramento, will offer an array of opportunities for growers and processors to interact with researchers on important industry-funded research, as well as ever-changing production and regulatory issues.

In addition to research symposia and panels, there will be workshops throughout the three-day conference. And, there will be a series of six-minute research updates that will run on Wednesday and Thursday afternoons, offering insight into a number of ongoing production research topics. Researchers will also be available at poster sessions during the social hour following their presentations on each of those days. This gives conference attendees a chance to ask followup questions of the researchers.

A series of workshops on Tuesday afternoon and again at lunch on Thursday will cover two critical topics: Irrigation and nitrogen management.

The first workshop will be on irrigation scheduling and best strategies for drought management. This will include new information on best season-long strategies under different water availability scenarios, and is an opportunity for all, regardless of water supply, to fine-tune irrigation practices.

The second workshop is an update on nitrogen management and budgeting. This will cover how to implement an updated in-season nutrient budget model based on information from recent Almond Board–funded research, and a discussion on meeting the record keeping requirements of the Irrigated Lands Regulatory Program. The Thursday format will allow growers who have purchased a lunch ticket to take a grab-and-go box lunch to their choice of workshop.

Symposium panels slated throughout the three-day conference will present new information on a number of timely topics and Almond Board–funded programs:

Sustainability and almonds — where are we?
The California Almond Sustainability Program was developed to account for what almond growers and handlers are already doing in the area of sustainability, as well as to create a tool for growers to review their operations and current practices to identify opportunities for additional efficiencies. This symposium will review what the cumulative self-assessment data tells us about almond success and opportunities for growth. In addition, Dr. Jeff Dlott with SureHarvest will provide an update on trends in sustainability in the U.S. and international marketplaces.

Field quality issues.
A panel will discuss updated guidelines based on completed studies addressing stockpile management, as well as coping with harvest rains and ongoing ABC-funded research providing new insights on managing concealed damage.

A comprehensive look at pollination and honey bees.
This session will cover bee contracting, hive inspection, grower best management practices to ensure hive health and a solid partnership with beekeepers, planting honey bee forage crops, and the bigger picture on honey bee supply and factors impacting honey bee health.

Pest management update.
This session will provide an update on what is new in the areas of almond pest management, including weeds, insects and diseases.

To register for the conference, visit AlmondConference.com.

Listen to Joe MacIlvaine, chairman of the Production Research Committee, explain how almond growers can get more out of The Almond Conference production and environmental research presentations this year.

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