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» February 2, 2009 «
Consumers are continuing to buy fresh produce, even as the economic slowdown continues. That's the finding of a Produce Marketing Association survey. Eighty percent of the respondents said they are buying as many potatoes now as they did six months ago. Similar numbers reported continued purchases of onions, bananas, carrots, lettuce and apples. The only downside is 60 percent of produce is bought on impulse and in this economy people are less impulsive.
Partners for Sustainable Pollination is a fledgling group seeking to encourage more use of plants that provide nectar and pollen for bees. Group members recommend native plants and others that provide food for bees. Their goal is to help honeybees and other pollinators survive the many pathogens that threaten hives. Members have been working with professional bee organizations to coordinate their efforts at expanding food sources for bees.
Farmers and cities that get water from the Kings and San Joaquin river basins face a dry summer. Hydrologists say the Kings River watershed only has about 66 percent of the average snowpack for this time of year. The San Joaquin River watershed has about 74 percent of the 30-year average snowpack. Cities and contractors on the east side of the Central Valley served by these rivers expect to receive relatively low allocations of water this year from governing agencies. Hydrologists say back-to-back wet storms are needed to improve the situation.
California egg production increased by 11 million eggs over the December number, according to a government report. Production was 20 million more than December 2007 from one percent fewer hens. The increase caused the price farmers earn to decline 5 cents per dozen from the November price to an average of 91 cents per dozen. That price was 39 cents per dozen less than in December 2007.Top