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Napa County receives top honors from California Farm Bureau
Agriculture

Napa County receives top honors from California Farm Bureau

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Farm Bureau HQ

Napa County Farm Bureau headquarters dressed for the holidays earlier this month. The Bureau was named county of the year this year by the California Farm Bureau — a title awarded to only one of the state's 53 farm bureaus across 56 counties.

Napa County Farm Bureau has been named the county of the year for 2020 by the California Farm Bureau, a title awarded to just one of the state’s 53 farm bureaus representing 56 counties.

This year marks the first time Napa County has won the award since 2009, according to CEO Ryan Klobas, who said the title is in part a testament to the work the bureau has done to support its membership and their employees through the pandemic.

“There are so many issues around (COVID-19). It’s not just compliance, it’s also keeping workers safe,” he said. Among other things, the Farm Bureau has created testing infrastructure for its members and their employees, who through the bureau can take a coronavirus test “same day” and have results within two days.

“That has been a tremendous advantage for Farm Bureau members to be able to do that, to be able to avoid wait times,” Klobas said. “They’re able to test employees pretty much on the spot.”

Testing delays in Napa County over the summer had previously proved an obstacle for agricultural employers attempting to keep their workforce safe. Many struggled with staff testing amid long wait times just as the wine grape harvest season kicked off.

Klobas cited the bureau’s growth over the last three years as another important accomplishment. Membership has grown considerably, as has the bureau’s financial strength, he said.

“This year has been a challenge, but I’m so proud of the success we have had,” Klobas added.

Farm Bureaus across California are evaluated on policy implementation, leadership, public relations, agricultural education and community involvement, Klobas said. Napa County Farm Bureau has “done well in all of those areas,” he added, citing the bureau’s policy implementation as especially effective.

The bureau this year came out in opposition of Proposition 15, known as the “split roll tax,” and condemned an executive order implemented by Gov. Gavin Newsom fast tracking workers compensation claims for employees who believed they’d been infected in the workplace. The bureau said this placed an undue burden on employers.

Jamie Johansson, president of the California Farm Bureau, cited Klobas and Napa County Farm Bureau President Johnnie White’s efforts as having “dramatically expanded” the Napa County Farm Bureau’s programming.

“They have built an extremely sophisticated political operation at the Farm Bureau to professionally represent Napa Ag,” Johansson said in the bureau’s news release. “It is now considered an influential authority for Napa Ag at the local, state and national level.”

WATCH NOW: HOW TO HOST A VIRTUAL HOLIDAY PARTY

How to Host a Virtual Holiday Party . As COVID-19 cases continue to rise across the world, it’s no surprise that the holiday season will have to look a lot different this year. . If you plan to follow government guidelines and stay safe, here are five tips for hosting a virtual holiday party. 1. Use it as an opportunity to get creative. Families have likely logged hundreds of hours on video calls so far, so think of a virtual holiday as an opportunity to mix it up. . Work with your family members to organize an elaborate and fun online activity. 2. Center your celebration around food and wine. Eating dinner together is an obvious opportunity to bring friends and family closer. . If you want to keep it short, share one aspect of a meal together, such as dessert or a toast. 3. Incorporate entertainment into your party. Keep everyone excited and engaged by planning some form of entertainment. Whether it be your cousin showing off their musical talent or your aunt being put in charge of creating a Spotify playlist, entertainment adds to any celebration. . 4. Play virtual games together. There are plenty of virtual gaming options out there, whether it be through a phone app or a website. . You can even create your own trivia contest or play a game of charades. . 5. Allow yourselves some free time to just talk. No matter how structured you’d like your virtual holiday to be, it’s a good idea to allow some open time. Guests can use the unstructured time to mingle and interact however they’d like.

SEE PHOTOS: A VISIT TO TARAMASSO RANCH IN NAPA FOR FARM FRESH EGGS

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You can reach Sarah Klearman at (707) 256-2213 or sklearman@napanews.com.

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Wine Industry Reporter

Wine industry reporter at the Napa Valley Register.

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