In response to disruptive activities by agents of Cesar Chavez at
harvest time in 1970, several
organizations formed Food Producers of Idaho under the leadership of
Phil Batt of Wilder.
The first mission of this new group
was to seek the enactment of farm labor legislation to remove
collective bargaining from the law of the jungle.
Such a law was passed by the Idaho Legislature in 1971 with a
termination date of
In the spring of 1972, Food Producers approached
the Legislature with a law written by
Richard Fields. The
1972 version was patterned closely after national legislation.
The Legislature provides for secret elections where necessary
and also defines fair and unfair labor practices for employers,
workers and their unions. A
five-person labor board administers this law which has never been
challenged in the courts. Two
board members were selected by Food Producers, two by the Migrant
Council and the final selection by the Governor.
From this small beginning, Food Producers
of Idaho has grown into a strong alliance of over 40
organizations. It has
made significant contributions to the Idaho
scene. It has always
been a strong supporter of a comprehensive noxious weed control
program. In 1976, Food
Producers was successful in getting the Legislature to adopt the
federal penalties that were a part of the federal pesticide
statutes. This made it
possible for the Director of Idaho Department of Agriculture to gain
quick approval for certain agricultural chemicals on an emergency
In 1975 Food Producers of Idaho inaugurated
a program of bringing congressional legislative and committee
experience life on our farms and ranches as houseguests of their
host families. Since
its inception, over 100 individuals have visited the
this program. Our new
friends have done great things for
Food Producers of Idaho annually sponsors this Idaho
Agricultural Fact-Finding Tour for congressional staff personnel and
Federal agency employees who are given the opportunity to visit
learn first-hand about agriculture and natural resource issues.
Food Producers of Idaho is involved in a number of special
projects to promote and educate people about the agriculture
Idaho Ag Summit, special events surrounding National Ag Day and
Agriculture/Earth Day and the development of the Agriculture-Natural
Resource Industry Political Action Committee (ANRI-PAC).
Another event is the Ag All-Star Recognition of legislators
based on their voting record of agriculture issues.
Food Producers of Idaho meets weekly during
the Legislative Session (January–March) and throughout the
remainder of the year on a monthly basis.
Special committees within Food Producers deal with issues
such as labor, transportation, water and industry relations.
Membership in Food Producers is in three categories:
Voting, Non-Voting and Individual.
Producers deals with key issues that face all of
. Strict guidelines
determine whether Food Producers establish a position on an issue.
Food Producers is a unique organization.
We know of no other state that has such an agricultural
organization. It lets
the world know that we in Idaho Agriculture are united.
Rick Waitley, Executive Director
55 SW 5th Avenue, Suite 100
Meridian ID 83642
Email - email@example.com