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Serving: MI

Vote before May 13 on onion checkoff

Owen Franken/Getty Images pile of yellow onions
VOTE: Michigan’s onion referendum runs through May 13.
Michigan Bits: Appointments made to fruit boards; DNR pledges 50 million trees by 2030.

Michigan’s onion producers can vote on the continuation of the Onion Promotion and Development Program for an additional five years and on proposed changes to the program.

The referendum, conducted by the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, runs until May 13.

Ballots have been mailed to producers, who are eligible to vote if they produced onions valued at more than $800 at first point-of-sale in any of the past three years. 

The Michigan Onion Promotion and Development Program, established in 1977, was developed to improve the economic position of the state’s onion producers by creating greater marketing opportunities for Michigan onions. By law, it must be resubmitted for grower approval every five years.

Currently, the assessment is $0.06 per cwt of onions.

For the program to be renewed, more than 50% of the producer votes cast, representing more than 50% of the total unit of measure represented on the cast ballots, must approve it.

For this referendum, each producer is entitled to one vote representing a single firm, individual proprietorship, corporation, company, association, partnership, or a husband-wife or family ownership.

All ballots must be filled out completely, signed and postmarked by May 13, and should be sent to MDARD, Executive Office, P.O. Box 30017, Lansing, MI 48909.

Eligible producers with questions or those who have not received a ballot should contact MDARD toll-free at 800-292-3939 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Appointments made to fruit boards

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer recently made some commission and fruit board appointments.

To the Michigan Cherry Committee, she appointed Dave Hackert of Ludington, Caleb Herrygers of Hart and Marc Willmeng of Watervliet.

The Michigan Cherry Committee was developed for the purpose of improving the economic position of the Michigan red tart and sweet cherry growers.

To the Michigan Tree Fruit Commission, Whitmer appointed Mark A. Miezio of Suttons Bay, Daniel A. Dietrich of Conklin and Gerrit Herrygers of Hart.

The Michigan Tree Fruit Commission was created for the purpose of improving the economic position and competitiveness of the Michigan tree fruit industry. The appointments are subject to the advice and consent of the Senate.    

DNR pledges 50 million trees by 2030

When is the best time to plant a tree? There’s an old proverb that says the answer is “20 years ago,” and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources says the second-best time is right now.

The DNR is encouraging people to grab a shovel and a tree and join in planting 50 million trees by 2030 as part of the 1T.org Trillion Trees campaign.

The Mi Trees campaign is part of a global effort to plant more trees to help communities adapt to the world’s changing climate. Michiganders love the state’s forests, which cover 20 million acres, about half of the state’s entire area. Nearly 4 million acres of that total is state forest managed by the DNR.

To make sure you have trees you can enjoy for years to come, keep several things in mind when planting:

Season. Spring and fall are best for planting trees.

Location. Make sure to consider the size your tree will be when it is fully grown, and plant an appropriate distance from buildings and away from above- and belowground utilities. Before putting a spade in the ground, be sure to Call 811. Consider planting native trees and shrubs, which provide food and cover for wildlife.

Record it. Once you plant a tree, you can help the DNR meet its tree-planting goal by logging your tree on the interactive online map.

Learn more about the worldwide campaign at 1T.org. For more information on how the DNR takes care of state forests, visit michigan.gov/forestry.

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