Nuts in the North State

FARMS Leadership | Tehama, North State, and Kern| April 21, 2021

Field Day Host(s) and Mentors  Andersen and Sons Shelling: Vina, CA Karen Gundersen, Grower Relations Manager Kristin Coley, Food Safety and Marketing Jennifer Williams, Marketing Director with California Walnut Board and Commission

Hands-On Kit Components Variety ID Worksheet, 5 different walnut varietals, In shell walnuts for cracking and grading, Kernel Defects information sheet. Small mallet for cracking nuts.

Theme
Walnuts and Processing

Summary of the Day  This field day hosted by Andersen and Sons Shelling was extra special with Jennifer Williams with the California Walnut Board and Commission joining us. She started off the day by introducing herself and the California Walnut Board to the students and explaining the important role they play for all those involved in producing and processing walnuts. We then jumped into watching a wonderful video about Andersen and Sons as a company which gave the students a good overview of what to expect as Karen Gundersen and Kristin Coley took us on a LIVE tour of the HUGE and expanding facility in Vina, CA. Students were able to see everything from walnuts being cracked and sorted, to grading, and finally to the packing line where local walnuts were going into retail packages with large retail names on them! So cool!!

Along the way, we discussed the many career opportunities that Andersen and Sons offers. Many of which require only a high school diploma, however if students have an interest in exploring high education they learned about careers that needed a certificate as well as those which need a 4 year degree to hold. To wrap up the day, Karen did a fun and interactive walnut variety identification activity using the hands on kits each student had received prior to the field day. Who knew there were so many different varieties of walnuts?! Students then were encouraged to use the guide they were given to crack and sort the in shell walnuts they received to see what kind of work goes into deciding what a farmer get paid for his walnuts.

We couldn’t be more thankful for partners like Andersen and Sons and the support we get from the Walnut Board to help educate our youth on the importance of not only where our food comes from, but how much work goes into getting it from the orchard to your trail mix or granola.

If you would like to join in on this field day…click HERE!

Leave a Reply