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Reed looks into local grape issues

March 3, 2016
Westfield Republican

PORTLAND - The Lake Erie Regional Grape Program (LERGP) hosted Congressman Tom Reed during his recent visit to the area. After taking a tour of the Cornell Lake Erie Research and Extension Laboratory and learning about current research and extension projects from Dr. Terry Bates, Director of CLEREL, and LERGP extension staff, Congressman Reed took the opportunity to connect with local grape growers to identify the issues currently impacting their vineyard operations.

During the discussion, growers brought up specific concerns regarding immigration, minimum wage and EPA regulations that were negatively impacting their grape operations. "I think the audience brought up very important and valid concerns with their questions. I feel we had a strong representation of the grape industry within the small group present." says Luke Haggerty, LERGP extension associate.

The visit concluded with some pruning instruction out in the vineyard. First, was an introduction on how to hand prune a grape vine followed by Congressman Reed taking a turn operating the station's mechanical pruner.

Article Photos

Submitted photo
Ted Taft, LERGP research support specialist, assists Congressman Tom Reed with the operation of a mechanical pruner in a vineyard near Portland.

"We had a great time at the Lake Erie Regional Grape Program and meeting with growers from our region. We care about making sure their concerns are heard in Washington, and will continue to work to help them be successful. The agro-tourism industry throughout the region continues to grow and is vital to our economy. It's only right that we support them." Reed said.



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