Food & Farm News
September 18, 2013
Citrus pest causes concern
A large infestation of a dangerous pest in the state's top citrus-growing county has farmers concerned. Citrus growers will attend a special meeting next Monday to learn about implications of Asian citrus psyllid discoveries in Dinuba. Officials fear the pest because it can carry a disease that kills citrus trees. The insect has been found in several California locations, but the disease has affected only one tree in Los Angeles County.
Fig harvest starts, ends early
Fans of fresh figs will have to move fast. Farmers report the fig season is coming to an early end. One Merced County farmer says the season was the earliest she has experienced in 23 years, because of warm spring weather that caused figs to mature faster. Almost all U.S.-grown figs come from California, and nearly all of those come from Madera, Merced and Fresno counties.
Study reduces calorie estimates for nuts
There are fewer calories in pistachios and almonds than previously thought, according to new research. A U.S. Department of Agriculture study indicated the caloric value of pistachios has likely been overestimated by about 5 percent. The researchers also found that the estimated calories for almonds may be lower than usually thought. Their calculations were based on new estimates of how many calories are actually absorbed by people who ate the nuts.
More fruit heads to Australia
For the second time in six weeks, California farmers have found new customers in Australia. Trade officials announced that peaches and nectarines from California and the Pacific Northwest have been allowed entry into all Australian states. An initial shipment of California fruit passed inspection in Australia and became available to shoppers there. Last month, Australia widened imports of California grapes.