Nov 2, 2023
Organic summit keynote to feature grower roundtable

Leadership from three of the nation’s most progressive organic growing operations have been confirmed as panelists for the second of two keynote presentations at the upcoming Organic Grower Summit (OGS).

“Grower Roundtable: The State of Organic Growing” will feature panelists Joe Pezzini, senior director of ag operations for Taylor Farms; Nishan Moutafian, vice president of production for Driscoll’s; and Briana Giampaoli, organic category manager for Live Oak Farms. The session will be moderated by Walt Duflock, senior vice president of innovation for Western Growers.

Joe Pezzini
Joe Pezzini

Featuring candid commentary, the thought-provoking keynote presentation will explore how these three leaders in organic production are dealing with hot-button topics, including supply chain issues, inflation, labor, sustainability, new innovations and technologies, according to a news release.

“While consumption of organic fresh produce continues to climb, domestic growers face an unprecedented array of regulatory and marketplace challenges that threaten future growth,” Duflock said in the release. “The leaders on this panel will share valuable insight into the state of the organic industry and strategies for turning obstacles into opportunities.”

The sixth annual OGS is designed to provide information vital to organic growers and producers, including an overview of the opportunities and challenges in the production of organic fresh food. The grower roundtable is part of an extensive educational program designed to inform and engage organic producers, their service providers, and supply chain partners. 

Nishan Moutafian
Nishan Moutafian

The announcement of the grower roundtable highlights a robust educational program for OGS 2023, which includes eight educational sessions and a pair of keynote presentations, according to the release. In the other keynote presentation, the annual Grower of the Year award will be awarded to this year’s recipient, Rod Braga, president and CEO of Braga Fresh. 

The other educational sessions at OGS 2023 include:

  • SOE Deadline Looms — Are You Ready?
  • Understanding Evolving Production Challenges for Organic Growers
  • Regenerative — What Does it Mean for Organic?
  • Unlocking the Value of AI on the Digital Farming Journey
  • Meet the Ag Sharks
  • Roadmap to a Sustainable Pest Management Future for Organics
  • Challenges of Organic Seed Production
  • How Organic Growers Are Using Ag Tech: Obstacles & Opportunities
Briana Giampaoli
Briana Giampaoli

OGS 2023 will be Nov. 29-30 at the Hyatt Regency Monterey Hotel & Spa in Monterey, California. The sixth annual Organic Grower Summit is designed to provide information vital to organic growers and producers, including an overview of the opportunities and challenges in the production of organic fresh food.

 “In partnership with Western Growers, this year’s OGS will provide up-to-date resources and information to support the continued success of organic producers, with an emphasis on the changing organic production landscape as well as the role of ag technology,” said Matt Seeley, co-founder and CEO of Organic Produce Network. “From seed to soil to harvest, our goal is to present the most relevant and timely information on the most important subjects and issues facing organic production.”

Walt Duflock
Walt Duflock

The sold-out OGS trade show floor will feature soil amendment, AgTech, food safety, packaging and equipment exhibitors who will have the opportunity to connect with organic field production staff, supply chain managers, pest management advisors and food safety experts. General registration is open.

For more information on the sixth annual OGS, presented by Western Growers and Organic Produce Network, visit

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