Food & Farm News
May 21, 2014
Grilling season may feature more poultry
With Memorial Day weekend comes the start of the traditional grilling season, and experts believe people will be grilling more chicken and other poultry products. The California Poultry Federation says chicken will be a less expensive alternative, as retail prices for beef and pork continue to rise. Prices for chicken are expected to go up as well, but not at the same rate. The bright outlook for poultry demand is expected to continue into next year.
Searching for drought-tolerant wheat
In an effort to produce more food with less water, researchers at the University of California, Davis, are comparing hundreds of wheat varieties. They’re growing the wheat under both water stress and normal irrigation, in hopes of identifying the genetic source of drought tolerance. That tolerance could then be bred into commercial wheat varieties. Researchers have plots at three warm-weather sites in Davis, the Imperial Valley and Mexico, in order to account for local conditions.
Reduction in fog affects orchards
It’s been less foggy in the Central Valley in recent winters, and that could affect the region’s fruit and nut trees, according to a new report. Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, say fog helps trees go dormant during the winter, promoting a strong springtime bloom. But the number of foggy days has dropped nearly by half since the 1980s. Fruit specialists are working to develop trees that thrive with less winter chill.
Avocados benefit heart health
If you add a slice of avocado to your hamburger, you may also be supporting heart and vascular health, according to a UCLA study. Healthy men between the ages of 18 and 35 who added fresh Hass avocado halves to hamburger patties appeared to have better readings of certain biological measures of heart and vascular health. The study showed inflammation and narrowing of blood vessels lessened within hours of consumption.