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Fishers, N.Y. – Following is a statement from New York Apple Association President Jim Allen in response to introduction this week in the U.S. Senate of immigration reform legislation, ““Border Security, Economic Opportunity and Immigration Modernization Act” (S. 744). While many persons and organizations deserve recognition for their work to this point, NYAA would like to highlight in particular our state's own Sen. Charles Schumer (D):

“Apples are more than just a New York state icon, they are a favorite local food and the apple industry is vital to the state’s economy.  Yet without a reliable supply of agricultural guest workers, our growers would not be able to harvest their crops, and our iconic apples would disappear from store shelves and farm markets. In the last few years, the issue has reached crisis level for us.

“After more than a decade of denial, this week we saw very encouraging signs that our nation’s long-broken agricultural guest worker program would be fixed as part of the Senate’s sweeping immigration reform legislation.  Of course we know the debate isn’t over – we’re just glad to finally get a forum for the debate.

“Our own U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer (D) was integral to getting this issue moved out of politicized stalemate to practical discussion. Once again, he has demonstrated his understanding and support of the needs of New York agriculture, including the New York apple industry. Our grateful industry says, ‘Thanks, Chuck!’, and ‘Keep up the great work.’ “

About New York Apple Association, Inc.
A nonprofit agricultural trade association based in Fishers, N.Y., NYAA represents the state’s commercial apple growers. The association supports profitable growing and marketing of New York apples through increasing demand for apples and apple products, representing the industry at state and federal levels, and serving as the primary information source on New York apple-related matters. For more information, visit www.nyapplecountry.com.