Title: Florida Citrus Exchange bulletin
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00091279/00002
 Material Information
Title: Florida Citrus Exchange bulletin
Physical Description: Serial
Language: English
Publisher: Florida Citrus Exchange
Place of Publication: Tampa, FL
Publication Date: April 14, 1933
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00091279
Volume ID: VID00002
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
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Full Text









BULLETIN
TaRma, Florida,
April 14, 1935.


TO ALL GROV.rER MEMBERS
FLORIDA CITRUS EXCHANGE


The following copy of resolutions adopted hy our Boirr. of
Eirr.-tors on April 8, 1933, and statement authorized for r31leo.s are- for y'Jir
infor motion.
Yours very truly,
0. M. Felix,

01F-ER Secretary



WHEREAS, the Board of Directors of the Florida Citrus Exchange,
recognizing the precarious posit-ion &f its growcr-members duo to
uiprccoedntce low returns from fruit, as a result of oconomi-
conditions and due in part at least to the poor quality of fruit
resulting from late bloom and urfav)rable gro-wer conditions,did
on its own initiative take stops to reduce the operating costs of
the ExchEnge by reduction of salaries," curtailment of ri.spensible
activities, reduction of personnel, elimination of sales offices
where rcAucod carlot sales had brought about excessive-costs and
had in norntomplation of further economies directed the President,
General Manager and Comrtrollcr of the organization, as a special
committee, to give careful consideration to further onssiblo sav-
ings and to make ricommendetions to the Board of Directors that
would effect such further savings in the operating costs of the


WHEREAS, without regard to the expressed purpose of the Board rf
Directors t% give consideration to the rccomhondations of such
sub-committoc, the President of the Exchange, without ccnfercnco
with the Gbncral Manager or so far as has been mand knov;r with
the Cmnptrollor, did prepare twelve rocommondations of his own
and did before presenting same to the Board of Directors of the
Exchango make public said recommendations at a meeting of Associa-
tion Prcsiddnts, attandod by a Inrge number of grower-members of
the Exchange and by representatives of the press, presumably for
the purpose of creating an influence on the Board members, favor-
able to his plan, and

WHEREAS, the.Board of Dir:ctors of the Exchange did reject the
first two recommendations made by the President by a vote of fifteen
to three and did r-fcr the remaining ten recommendations to a joint
committee composed of the sub-committee previously appointed, to-
gether with the Advisory and Finance Committee with instructions to
the special committee to bring to the Board definite recommendations
aq previously directed, and

WHEREAS, the two recommendations of the President disapproved by
the Board wore destructive rather thdn constructive and did not
offer anything definite in its place, or giving any assurance that
the organizntion to be set up in its place would be headed by ex-
perienced executives or splesmen that might be acceptable to the
grower-members, and

WHEREAS, the President has boen repeatedly urged by the Board to
submit to it definite charges or circums-tances justify-ing the action
requested by him in his first two rLcommendations on which they could
properly base such action, and

WHEREAS hc has stated to the Board that he had made no chnrp'es and
was no' ibcr-ty to divulge to the Board the circumetone-s -"r 'LC
sources of his information, but rcitorated his gcncrcl .t.:' L ;-; as
to rumors among the grLowers without offering evidence of n:t : -1.-t
on his part to prove or disprove some, and


-1-









tonnage behind them. They are not dissuaded or alarmed by a heavily
publicized result of a questionnaire sent to a list of supposed Ex-
change members and answered by less than a thousand, or approximately
14 per cent of the membership of the Florida Citrus Exchpnge. No
signature on the questionnaire was required and growers, not members,
were permitted to vote,

It should also be remembered that not only the State of Florida
but the entire country has been going through one of the worst economic
disturbances in all history so that the buying power of the nation is
reduced by the inability of some twelve million workers to earn a liveli-
hood, by the closing of nearly ten thousand banks, and by generally de-
pressed market conditions. It is a well known fact that farm income
has been reduced approximately 75 per cent. But in spite of adverse
conditions your own cooperative organization has been making constant
headway and substantial gains. Economies have been effected all along
the line. Salaries have been reduced 25 per cent. Departments have
been eliminated and the number of employees has been reduced. The
Exchange's retain now stands at the lowest figure in twelve years.
Contemplating further action along these lines, however, it should be
remembered that beyond the skelton organization the number of employees
is of necessity in direct ratio to the fruit volume handled.

So far as the twelve point program of the former president is
concerned, many of these suggestions have been already adopted by the
Board and put into effect. Others have been given consideration. In
fact, your Board of Directors has during the past three years con-
sistently progressed to the point where all efforts at monopolistic
control of the citrus tonnage in the state, as well as any activities
not related to marketing, have been completely changed, with the
result that the Exchange is now and has for some time confined its
activities to better marketing of the growers'fruit. This Board has
sponsored improvement of finances and has'placed a comptroller in
charge with a view to improved operations, as well as sales. Realizing
that organization work from this office was impractical, this Board
made a study of local associations and sub-exchanges and decided that
they should carry on the organization work. A field department was
organized to improve by suggestion the weaknesses of the associations.
This Board has had an examination of the various Depart nts and
:"' --- -- -ubsidiaris--inprogross-in-orter that efficiency and economies be
effected for their improvement.

The new president last year was elected on this reform program
which was intended to be carried forward in an orderly, businesslike
manner consistent with good judgment. Unfortunately this whole busi-
nesslike adjustment was suddenly interrupted right in the midst of a
very difficult selling season by his sudden demand to oust the entire
management. The Board does not criticise Mr. Edwards for his sug-
gestions concerning what he believes to be justifiable organization
procedure. It does, however, hold that his actions in publicly demand-
ing acceptance of his program, in publicly making inferences of un-
sound practices without supporting evidence, have'dangerously injured
the organization, its standing, morale and credit. More particularly
does Mr. Edwards deserve censure for continuing his agitation after
his proposals had been acted upon fairly and disposed of by the Board,
even though brought to it first through the press.

In helping to'organize and in assisting the so-called "Growers
Square Deal Committee," which seeks to dictate the policies of this
Board and which at considerable expense hPs conducted a campaign highly
injurious to the Exchange, Mr. Edwards further demonstrated that he
is not the leader to serve as the head of this cooperative organization.

In agreeing with Mr. Edwards in the elimination of extravagant
and wasteful practices, the Board is inclined to question his willing-
ness personally to adopt his own recommendations. As president, his
expense accounts are in excess of $5,000.00, many of which have been
for activities undertaken without the knowledge of the Board or the
General Manager, but entirely upon his own responsibility. The Board
finds upon xaaination of this expense account that Mr. Edwards finds
it necessary to use two assistants or secretaries, and that in spite
of the fact that other employees of the Florida Citrus Exchange
received drastic salary cuts, Mr. Edwards raised the pay of one of his
secretaries, Mr. Rencher.









tonnage behind them. They are not dissuaded or alarmed by a heavily
publicized result of a questionnaire sent to a list'of supposed Ex-
change members and answered by less than a thousand, or approximately
14 per cent of the membership of the Florida Citrus Exchenge. No
signature on the questionnaire was required and growers, not members,
were permitted to vote.

It should also be remembered that not only the State of Florida
but the entire country has been going through one of the worst economic
disturbances in all history so that the buying power of the nation is
reduced by the inability of some twelve million workers to earn a liveli-
hood, by the closing of nearly ten thousand banks, and by generally de-
pressed market conditions. It is a well known fact that farm income
has been reduced approximately 75 per cent. But in spite of adverse
conditions your own cooperative organization has been making constant
headway and substantial gains. Economies have been effected all along
the line. Salaries have been reduced 23 per cent. Departments have
been eliminated and the number of employees has been reduced. The
Exchange's retain now stands at the lowest figure in twelve years.
Contemplating further action along these lines, however, it should be
remembered that beyond the skelton organization the number of employees
is of necessity in direct ratio to the fruit volume handled.

So far as the twelve point program of the former president is
concerned, many of these suggestions have been already adopted by the
Board and put into effect. Others have been given consideration. In
fact, your Board of Directors has during the past three years con-
sistently progressed to the point where all efforts at monopolistic
control of the citrus tonnage in the state, as well as any activities
not related to marketing, have been completely changed, with the
result that the Exchange is now and has for some time confined its
activities to better marketing of the growers'fruit. This Board has
sponsored improvement of finances and has'placed a comptroller in
charge with a view to improved operations, as well as sales. Realizing
that organization work from this office was impractical, this Board
made a study of local associations and sub-exchanges and decided that
they should carry on the organization work. A field department was
organized to improVe by suggestion the weaknesses of the associations.
This Board has had an examination of the various Departr-nts and
.- --suibij arlst-i' pr ogreS-inorer that efficiency and economies be
effected for their improvement.

The new president last year was elected on this reform program
which was intended to be carried forward in an orderly, businesslike
manner consistent with good judgment. Unfortunately this whole busi-
nesslike adjustment was suddenly interrupted right in the midst of a
very difficult selling season by his sudden demand to oust the entire
management. The Board does not criticise Mr. Edwards for his sug-
gestions concerning what he believes to be justifiable organization
procedure. It does, however, hold that his actions in publicly demand-
ing acceptance of his program, in publicly making inferences of un-
sound practices without supporting evidence, have dangerously injured
the organization, its standing, morale and credit. More particularly
does Mr. Edwards deserve censure for continuing his agitation after
his proposals had been acted upon fairly and disposed of by the Board,
even though brought to it first through the press.

In helping to-organize and in assisting the so-called "Growers
Square Deal Committee," which seeks to dictate the policies of this
Board and which at considerable expense hPs conducted a campaign highly
injurious to the Exchange, Mr. Edwards further demonstrated that he
is not the leader to serve as the head of this cooperative organization.

In agreeing with Mr. Edwards in the elimination of extravagant
and wasteful practices, the Board is inclined to question his willing-
ness personally to adopt his own recommendations. As president, his
expense accounts are in excess of $5,000.00, many of which have been
for activities undertaken without the knowledge of the Board or the
General Manager, but entirely upon his own responsibility. The Board
finds upon examination of this expense account that Mr. Edwards finds
it necessary to use two assistants or secretaries, and that in spite
of the fact that other employees of the Florida Citrus Exchange
received drastic salary cuts, Mr. Edwards raised the pay of one of his
secretaries, Mr. Renchor*







This expense account, however, does not represent the real cost
of these activities on the part of the President. They do not ex-
press in dollars and cents the destruction of morale caused by the
many trips to the markets of himself and private secretary paid for
by the grower-members, which materially disrupted the morale of our
field sales organization. They do not include the cost to this
organization caused by the loss of grower morale within the state
as a result of his activities contacting the press and the malcon-
tents in and out of the organization. They do not contemplate the
present and future cost to the organization resulting in loss of
credit and prestige among business and banking interests and credit
facilities throughout the country caused by the expensive publicity
given to his opinions,

The grower-members have always been welcomed to and have voiced
their opinions in Board meetings. Ample facilities have been provided
for their attendance6

It is odd and unfortunate that the president of the Florida
Citrus Exchange did interrupt the normal progress of reform and
improvement set in operation before he came to the Board and in
orderly progress up until March 9th.

This Board has received the matter calmly, has correctly
analyzed the situation, has voted down his first two proposals, and
has acted upon the other ten in line with-good busi-ess procee'lre.








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