The Obama Administration racked up one of the biggest wins in decades for global trade when it won approval in the Senate to move forward with the Trans Pacific Partnership.
The partnership will open the doors for trade and development with a dozen Asian nations. China is not included but passage of TPP, which is much more likely now that procedural roadblocks have been cleared, will give the U.S. a powerful tool to counter China’s growing influence in Asia.
For many sectors of the regional economy, particularly in agriculture, the deal will be huge. A stop by the mid-year update at the Limoneira headquarter in Santa Paula underscores why.
Since it quit the Sunkist lemon marketing cooperative and went independent, Limoneira has seen annual growth of 10 percent for its lemon output and now has 250 year-round customers. Some 30 percent of its 3 million cartons per year are for the export market, with Asia figuring more and more prominently.
Containerized shipping in refrigerated units has given Limoneira the ability to get lemons to market anywhere in the world year round from multiple growing locations.
In emerging markets in Asia and elsewhere, said Senior Vice President Alex Teague, people are starting to experience more and more success. With success comes a trip to the bar to celebrate and that is where lemons are making their mark, one vodka and tonic at a time.
Limoneira has ambitious goals — it wants to triple production to 10 million cartons and it’s expanding its packing house just off Santa Paula’s Cummings Road to accommodate much bigger output.
The Trans Pacific Partnership will do a lot to protect our technology companies’ intellectual property, increase global demand for Central Coast wines and ease barriers for manufacturing exports.
It also will help speed Limoneira toward its ambitious export goals.
Gorrell ready for new challenge
Until a couple of weeks ago, former Assembly member Jeff Gorell was the odds-on favorite to succeed retiring Supervisor Kathy Long in Ventura County’s Third District.
The popular Long has steered the county on a sensible path that’s balanced growth and environmental interests, public safety and civil rights. Gorell, also a centrist, was viewed as front runner for the 2016 race.
But the Navy reserve officer who did a tour in Afghanistan while in the Assembly, surprised many when he announced plans to join longtime friend and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti’s cabinet, taking the job as deputy mayor for homeland security and public safety.
When he starts in early July, Gorell, a former prosecutor, will oversee the city’s scandal-prone police department and sometimes contentious relations with federal law enforcement. We have no doubt Gorell is up for this new challenge and we wish him well.