Food & Farm News
October 14, 2015
Farmers continue efforts against federal water rule
Farm groups say they will continue efforts to overturn a federal rule governing “waters of the United States,” despite a court decision that delayed the rule nationwide. According to farm groups, the rule could bring new, widespread restrictions on agricultural land and farming activities. An appeals court ruling last week stops enforcement of the rule, but agricultural organizations say they will pursue legislation in Congress to have the rule withdrawn.
Record-breaking year for olive oil
The California Olive Oil Council forecasts record-breaking production of 4 million gallons of extra virgin olive oil for the 2015 harvest, eclipsing last year’s production of 2.4 million gallons. As of January this year, there were more than 35,000 acres of olives planted for extra virgin olive oil production, and the council estimates 3,500 new acres will be added each year through 2020.
Pumpkins plentiful but smaller
California’s pumpkin harvest started earlier this year than in previous years--and is still underway. The first pumpkins brought in from the fields were good sized, while fields harvested later in the season are producing smaller crops. As a result, consumers may see shortages in some sizes, but the overall volume of pumpkins remains steady throughout the state.
Specialty foods appeal to consumers
An online survey by the Specialty Food Association found that, for the first time in the past 10 years, men have surpassed women as most likely to purchase specialty foods, which include unique, crafted and high-value food items. The study also found that: Lower-income consumers are buying products like artisan cheese and single-origin chocolate; people approaching age 40 are spending more on meal ingredients; and younger consumers are choosing convenience.