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New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie would very much like Douglas Fisher to continue in his post as the state's secretary of agriculture.

To that end, the governor released the following statement of support Jan. 26: "Secretary Douglas Fisher has proven to have a deep appreciation for New Jersey’s agricultural community that will be a valued addition to the Christie administration. I support his position as secretary for the New Jersey Department of Agriculture and look forward to working with him to promote and protect our state’s natural assets."

Under state law, Mr. Fisher, 62, a former Democratic assemblyman, serves at the pleasure of the state Board of Agriculture with the approval of the governor. The board initially appointed Mr. Fisher to the position in February 2009 with the support of then-Gov. Jon Corzine. No new action by the board is required now, according to Lynn Richmond, public information officer at the New Jersey Department of Agriculture.

“New Jersey looks to the future in preparing its current and upcoming farmers and fishermen to take advantage of trends in the industry like the growing demand for locally grown products,” Mr. Fisher said in a Jan. 27 statement to The Produce News. “The Department of Agriculture looks forward to working with Governor Christie as we help farmers develop opportunities for value- added products; continue to preserve farmland; protect our agricultural and natural resources; feed school children and the hungry; and ensure the safety and quality of our agricultural products.”

Mr. Fisher replaced Charles H. Kuperus, who resigned Dec. 31, 2008, after serving in that post for about seven years.