Food & Farm News
June 4, 2014
Farmers plant cling peaches
With peach harvest due to start this month, food processors who buy peaches for canning are working to maintain their supplies. For the first time, California’s largest peach processors are offering 20-year contracts to farmers who plant new cling-peach orchards. Demand for canned peaches now exceeds the domestic supply, and processors are looking for ways to entice California farmers to sustain their peach acreage.
Lumber demand increases
The recent increase in California home construction has helped the timber market improve. That’s encouraging news for California timber producers, who have seen dozens of lumber mills close due to the housing recession, a tight labor supply and regulatory restrictions. California timber production has dropped in half during the past 20 years, but producers say prices have increased now and they have seen some legislative and regulatory improvements.
State celebrates dairy farmers
In celebration of California milk producers, Governor Brown has declared June as “Real California Milk Month.” Dairy farmers in California ship more than 40 billion pounds of milk annually, accounting for about 21 percent of the nation’s supply and making California the top milk-producing state. The proclamation encourages Californians to mark the month of June by purchasing California milk and dairy products.
Citrus marketers work to reopen China trade
A delegation of Chinese agricultural and trade experts is due to visit California this month, as citrus growers work to reopen trade with China. The Chinese government closed its market to California citrus exports last year, citing concerns about a plant disease. The delegation will review how the citrus farmers and packers are meeting standards recently developed by the Chinese. Exports could resume under a two-year pilot program.