The USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) recently held its first Spanish-language webinar: An Introduction to PACA - In Spanish. Pat Romero, Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act (PACA) Western Regional director, introduced participants to the PACA Branch and discussed how it protects the produce industry.
Every day, PACA receives inquiries from produce companies requesting assistance to handle problems such as interpreting inspection certificates, settling contract disputes, and addressing bankruptcy problems. The branch promotes fair trading practices in the fruit and vegetable industry by establishing and enforcing a code of fair business practices and by helping companies resolve their disputes.
The webinar is part of an extensive outreach campaign by AMS’s Fruit and Vegetable Programs. After nearly ten webinars, the creation of a newsletter for the produce industry and several other ventures, the program continues to find ways to educate others about the value of its services.
The Hispanic community, the fastest growing population in the country, plays a major role in U.S. agriculture. AMS wants to make sure that this community is well-informed. The agency felt there was no better way to get the word out than to produce a webinar in Spanish.
Overall, the feedback has been positive as many participants were pleased to hear the presentation in their preferred language. More than 100 people, including individuals from Mexico, Costa Rica, Honduras, Peru and Chile, listened to the webinar.