Hank Giclas Leaves a Legacy of Food Safety and Industry Support as he Leaves Western Growers
May 06, 2020|
Friday, May 8th will be Hank Giclas’ last day at Western Growers. Hank, WG’s Senior Vice President for Science and Technology, has been with Western Growers since 1990. But now he is retiring and moving to the great state of New Mexico, where he and his wife will be enjoying their time in their newly-purchased home in Albuquerque.
When I first came to the leafy greens industry in 2007, Hank had just completed working with the industry to develop the Food Safety Practices that would become the heart of the LGMA program. Everybody kept telling me I needed to meet and talk to Hank Giclas. He would have all the answers to my questions. Soon we did meet, and we did talk and, sure enough, Hank had answers to every one of my questions. And believe me, I had a lot of questions! Hank and I have worked closely together ever since. Every time there were upgrades to be made to the leafy greens Food Safety Practices, Hank was at the forefront of those efforts, working with us and our members to create stronger, better Metrics.
And it wasn’t just the leafy greens industry that benefited from Hank’s expertise. On behalf of Western Growers Hank took a lead role in developing guidance documents for culinary herbs, green onions and cantaloupes. Along the way he also took the lead in launching the Western Growers Center for Innovation and Technology, an unprecedented effort to bring cutting edge technology into production agriculture in the Salinas valley. He has been a tireless advocate for the produce industry, and his work with the States of California and Arizona, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the US Department of Agriculture (USDA), and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), as well as his collaboration with other industry associations, is well known and highly regarded.
I will miss Hank’s friendship and his advice. Over the years he has been unsparing in his willingness to provide input to me and the LGMA staff. And he has been a true friend to the leafy greens community. He will be greatly missed!
Vaya con Dios, Brother!