National Watermelon Promotion Board

The National Watermelon Promotion Board (NWPB) is a commodity promotion board organization that operates under United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) oversight. At the urging of the industry, following years of declining watermelon consumption, Congress passed the Watermelon Research and Promotion Act in 1995 which is the legal framework of the board. This oversight ensures that the organization is operating in the most fiscally responsible manner, complies within the framework of the Act in which it operates under, and is disseminating fact-based information.

The NWPB is funded through a self-mandated industry assessment paid by the watermelon producer, handler, and importer. The NWPB is comprised of 41 elected board members who are then appointed by the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture. They represent all watermelon production areas of the United States and watermelon importers. During annual meetings, the NWPB’s directors decide how to invest its budget in board programs under the oversight of USDA.

The Board and its committees oversee the strategic direction, allocation of budget and staff resources, and operations of the NWPB. Board meetings are held twice a year, the executive committee meets once a month via teleconference, and individual committees meet via teleconference as needed. This meeting structure allows NWPB to be governed closely and effectively by the industry at the lowest possible operating expense.

The NWPB is a multi-faceted organization with a strategic mission to make watermelon an everyday, healthy choice for consumers throughout the United States, Canada and other export markets. NWPB works to increase consumer demand for watermelon through promotions, marketing, research, communication and educational programs. It is considered the marketing and communications arm of the watermelon industry.

A primary function of the NWPB is to serve as a crisis communication agency for the watermelon industry. The NWPB has a comprehensive crisis communications plan that is ready to use in case of crisis in the industry. The multi-faceted plan includes crisis training for each board member and key staff, crisis protocol and checklists. In addition, NWPB’s plan lists key contacts, and includes access to crisis communications experts for consultation and guidance in how to handle media and consumers if problems arise.

National Watermelon Association

The National Watermelon Association (NWA) is the oldest fruit commodity trade organization in the USA, with its beginnings in March of 1914. The NWA is a membership-based organization that concentrates on four cornerstones:

  • Federal Policy, Regulations & Government Relations
  • Pest & Disease Research
  • Food Safety & Traceability
  • National Watermelon Queen Program Promotions