Ag Venture 2012

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Posted by on December 6, 2012 in Uncategorized


Seismic Testing, San Luis Obispo County

Contact: Raven Castro                                                                                        For: Immediate Release

Tel: 530.867.2833


Seismic Testing Disturbs Ocean Life, Central Coast Locals Riot Against PG&E

San Luis Obispo County residence gathered in the board of supervisors’ chambers to speak out against seismic testing. Locals against testing came in full force dressed in pirate costumes holding up signs that reinforced their negative claims about the effects of the seismic testing conducted at Diablo nuclear power plant by Pacific Gas and Electric.

The meeting began at 9AM Shown here is a Humpback Whale (Megaptera novaeangliae)on October 30, 2012. Over ninety San Luis Obispo County residences from Arroyo Grande to Morro Bay spoke out against seismic testing during the public comment period. Each public comment is allotted a three-minute time slot to publically voice their personal and organizational opinions in front of the Board of Supervisors, PG&E representatives and fellow constituents. Public comments ranged from local biologists to members of the coastal commission. The main topics to arise through commentary were the effects on the wildlife as well as local fishing operations. One concerned citizen said, “I live off the coast of Avila Beach and often watch the dolphins, they are normally very happy. On this particular day, the dolphins looked angry, they seemed unharmonious with nature. After getting word PG&E had begun testing earlier that week, I wondered if that was the cause of their anger.”

The meeting was conducted smoothly by the President of the board of supervisors though it was hard to control such a lively crowed. When comments are made such as, “the dolphins looked angry…” it’s hard not to find yourself laughing. The public commentary came from a unique group of residence some took a statistical approach to the matter and the effects seismic waves have on ocean life while others created a mockery of their selves and were hard to take seriously. Either approach, after 4 ½ hours of public comment the opinion was clear. The San Luis Obispo County board of Supervisors went into closed session to discuss their final verdict. The result, PG&E was to seize seismic testing at Diablo canyon nuclear power plant; effective immediately. Residents from across the county in attendance celebrated their victory.


The Board of Supervisors serves as the Legislative body of San Luis Obispo County for the planning and provision of services related to public needs and the requirements of state and federal laws. California law provides for five Supervisors to be elected by district. As the elected representative of the people of San Luis Obispo County, the Board of Supervisors establishes overall county priorities and sets policy. For more information go to

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Posted by on November 20, 2012 in Uncategorized


The story behind GMO labeling and Prop 37



GMO Labeling: more than a sticker!gmo-labeling_1

By: Raven Castro

On November 6th California voters will make a decision that will drastically impact the agriculture industry. Proposition 37 will strike the ballot box. James Wheaton, the original maker of prop 37, calls it, “The California right to know genetically engineered food act.” Prop 37 will require labeling on raw and processed food that contains any genetically modified organisms.

Though, the proposition seems like simple “labeling” it does create a large fiscal impact. An estimated 1 million dollars will be spent on state regulation of GMO labeling. Prop 37 was created with the intent of allowing consumers to make informed buying decisions. Prop 37 does not put any stipulations on food that is genetically modified outside of labeling it. However, it does allow exemptions to the mandated labeling.
Exempt foods include, “certified organic; unintentionally produced with genetically engineered material; made from animals fed or injected with genetically engineered material but not genetically engineered themselves; processed with or containing only small amounts of genetically engineered ingredients; administered for treatment of medical conditions; sold for immediate consumption such as in a restaurant; or alcoholic beverages,” according to

It should be no surprise that high dollar supporters of this measure include; Organic Consumers Fund, Amy’s Kitchen, Cliff Bar & Co., and Annie’s. Common ground? All organic. All exempt. Buying organic has become an epidemic in California over the last few years. Organically certified foods are seen as a healthier food supply for consumers. But what about the basics? Your everyday groceries. Things like breakfast cereal, rice, corn products, cake mixes. The list goes on and on. The majority of what consumers eat is genetically modified. With existing companies using “Non GMO project” verified seals as a marketing tactic, why spend taxpayer money to label the larger percentage of products with a GMO label? So the consumer can make an educated decision when shopping of course!

GMO labeling will act as a “warning” label. Prop 37 has given the public a negative connotation of all genetically modified foods. Powerhouse companies like Monsanto and DowAgriscience who lead the industry in genetic modification are proud to be the makers of a food supply that is so technologically advanced. They have contributed over $9,000,000 in opposition of the ballot measure. That’s serious money because it’s serious business. GMO is an acronym common in agriculture. The same term seen on a package, GMO, will either confuse or concern shoppers. GMO’s were created to increase the productivity of crops by making them disease resistant, pest resistant, greater yielding and in many cases more nutritious. The consumer is being asked to pay more for a product that is labeled, with a term they may not understand, so they can make better informed purchases.

Agriculturalists are concerned with the effects of what they believe to be a poorly written ballot measure. Costs of production will go up. Small farms may go down. According to VoteNo37 the ballot measure will cost billions while shake down lawsuits may destroy farmers.  And for the consumers, they won’t feel the effects until they are standing at the check-out line.

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Posted by on October 24, 2012 in Uncategorized


Cover Letter

To whom it may concern,

Please accept this letter in application for the position currently available within company. My resume is enclosed for your review and consideration; I believe you will find that my qualifications meet your expectations. I have had previous experience working within the produce and wine industry as well as in hospitality. I enjoyed every aspect of each job, from building close relations with staff to taking part in enhancing the experience of each guest that walks through the door. I thrive in positive social environments and know that I would be a great component to your staff.

I am accustomed to a fast-paced environment where deadlines are a priority and handling multiple jobs simultaneously is a requirement. I enjoy a challenge and work hard to attain my goals. I am a team player and work well with others. Constant communication with co-workers and acquaintances has strengthened my interpersonal skills. Throughout my previous work experience I have also built strong customer service and relation skills. I strive for excellence and take pride in working hard while always wearing a smile!

If, after review of my resume, you feel I may be a prime candidate for the position, upon request I would be much obliged to take the time to prove my leadership ability through a conducted interview. I am very eager to meet with you and explore the possibility of utilizing my experience to benefit both you and me. Thank you for your time and consideration.

With much gratitude,

Raven K. Castro

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Posted by on October 24, 2012 in Uncategorized



Raven K. Castro
104 Third St.
Winters, CA 95694
(530) 867-2833


To obtain a position that will utilize my passion for agriculture as well as my unique costumer relations skills; where my outgoing personality will benefit both my employer and myself.

Work Experience

06/12 – 09/12 Sales/ Marketing Mission Produce

08/11 – 10/11 Front Desk Spyglass Inn

04/10 – 06/11 Front Desk Sandcastle Inn

09/09 – 09/10 Activities Director Cuesta College

08/09 – 05/10 Model/Sales Abercrombie & Fitch

01/09 – 08/09 Event Coordinator R.H. Phillip Winery

05/07 – 08/07 Cashier City of Winters

05/06 – 08/06 Cashier Thunderbird Stadium

Key Accomplishments

Agriculture Communicators of Tomorrow
NAMA, National Agriculture Marketing Team, Cal Poly
City Council Representative, Gamma Phi Beta Sorority
Associated Students of Cuesta College Senator
American Farm Degree
National Reserve Champion Marketing Team
California State Champion Marketing Team
Yolo County Future Farmers of America President
FFA State Conference Delegate
Junior Class President
California State Champion Agriculture Issues Team
California Scholarship Foundation Member
Washington D.C. Leadership Conference Volunteer
Putah Creek Nature Park Committee Student Chair


California Polytechnic University Agriculture Communications

Cuesta College Agriculture Business

Winters High School Graduated with honors 2009

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Posted by on October 24, 2012 in Uncategorized




“Cultivators of the earth are the most valuable citizens.  They are the most vigorous, the most independent, the most virtuous, and they are tied to their country and wedded to its liberty and interests by the most lasting bonds.”  -Thomas Jefferson

Hello, my name is Raven Castro.  I was born and raised in Winters, California. I am currently a senior at California Polytechnic State University.  Growing up in a rural farm community has instilled in me a love for the land and an appreciation for our county’s rich agriculture history.  I am the sixth generation of farmers; my family has grown wheat, tomatoes, rice, sugar beets, corn, apricots and walnuts for over a hundred years in Yolo County.  We take pride in being American Farmers.  At a young age I helped my dad and Grandpa maintain our walnut orchard by pulling sprinkler hoses, picking up pruning’s and separating debris from the walnut rows before its harvest. Being a daughter of a family of ranchers has instilled in me a strong work ethic and has given me the desire to continue my family’s tradition by becoming an agriculturalist.

I was a member of the Future Farmers of America (FFA). I served as Yolo County Section FFA President as well as the Winters FFA chapter secretary and reporter.  The FFA organization has been instrumental in shaping who I am today.  Being active in the FFA afforded me opportunities that I might not have otherwise had such as public speaking, raising livestock, and serving my community. I competed on an Agriculture Issues Forum Team in which I gave over 100 presentations to local and state agencies on the E. coli outbreak in the Salinas Valley.  My team and I won the California State Competition and went on to compete at the National FFA Convention in Indianapolis, Indiana. Shortly after, I joined the FFA Marketing Plan Team where my team and I took second place at the national competition. In the summer of 2009 my life was forever changed at the Leadership Conference in Washington, D.C.  While there we traveled to nearby corn fields to pick and pack corn for needy families. This experience touched me in ways I can’t begin to describe and has inspired me to lead a life that will encourage and support others through community service and agriculture.

In addition to these activities I was the student chairperson for the Putah Creek Nature Park Committee where I dedicate many hours helping develop a reconstruction plan for our local nature park. I enjoy promoting and educating the public on today’s agriculture practices and challenges. Cal Poly’s “Learn by Doing” motto has given me the hands on experience I need make a positive impact in the agriculture industry. In college I participated on Cal Poly’s Agriculture Marketing Team where I learned the importance of human relations, public relations, advertising, and social media. My learned skills were put to the test this summer when I was offered and internship in the sales/marketing department at Mission Produce. The internship allowed me to gain further knowledge of the produce industry and taught me how to effectively communicate with customers as well as my co-workers. I am well on my way to pursuing a career in the agriculture Industry.  My rich farming heritage, the FFA, and Cal Poly have helped lead me to a clear career path. I take pride in serving my community through sharing the story of the agriculture industry and all of those that help feed and clothe the world. The Farm Bureau is an organization that has served as an advocate for agriculture industry for generations and is one that I would be honored to be a part of.

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Posted by on October 12, 2012 in Uncategorized