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Texas Produce Association names senior vice president

Bret Erickson has been named senior vice president of the Texas Produce Association, effective Aug. 6.

"We are excited to have Bret join the Texas Produce Association," Ed Bertaud, director of business development for IFCO's Pallet Management Services division and chairman of the TPA, said in a press release. "We are confident that Bret possesses the professional qualities and experience to help position the association for continued future success as our industry continues to evolve."

TPA PresidentBret-EricksonBret Erickson and CEO John McClung added in the press release, "Bret's a great addition and I'm pleased that he's on board. I'm certain he'll do a great job and I look forward to working with him."

Mr. McClung will remain as president of the association for the immediate future.

Mr. Erickson grew up in the Rio Grande Valley and has strong ties to agriculture, having worked in commercial and foundation seed corn production for Pioneer Hi-Bred International for 12 years, nine of those in Weslaco, TX, and three more on Kauai, HI.

In December 2010, Mr. Erickson returned to the valley and began working for Texas Citrus Mutual and Texas Vegetable Association.

"Going to work for the Texas Produce Association is an incredible opportunity," Mr. Erickson said in the press release. "It's an exciting time for our industry and we have such a dynamic business environment. Every day presents new challenges and opportunities to grow and be successful. I'm eager to work with John and the TPA board as we tackle issues that are critical to our industry's ongoing success.

"I am grateful to Ray Prewett, president of TCM and the board members of TCM and TVA for the opportunity to have served those organizations, it was truly an enriching experience for me," Mr. Erickson added. "My connection to TCM and TVA certainly does not end here. TPA, TCM, and TVA have always enjoyed a collaborative partnership and we share many industry crossover issues."

Asked about the challenges most pressing to the industry, Mr. Erickson said, "From 30,000 feet overhead, we are feeding the world. We are all working towards being able to provide a safe and sustainable food supply for the world's growing population. That being said, resources such as land and water are obviously finite. No matter what segment of the industry you're in, we're all trying to do more with less, which creates some pretty significant challenges."