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Audio ActualityComments about increasing U.S. wine consumption
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» March 16, 2011 «
America is now the world's leading wine-consuming nation, according to the Wine Institute. U.S. residents surpassed France in 2010, consuming 330 million cases of wine. California wine accounted for 61 percent of that total. The French still consume more wine per capita; because of a larger population, U.S. consumption was higher even though Americans didn't consume as much individually. At the same time, wine exports increased almost 26 percent, and 90 percent of the exports were from California.
California's food and agriculture secretary encouraged a gathering of Farm Bureau leaders to reach out to consumers and government. Karen Ross suggested that farmers take advantage of a renewed consumer interest in where and how their food is produced. She encouraged growers to inform government of regulations that impede food production without improving food quality. Ross also said her agency will continue to protect the state from invasive pests and maintain food quality.
West Nile virus has been found again in California, and as a result the California State Veterinarian is urging horse owners to have their animals vaccinated. Last year, 19 horses were diagnosed with the disease. They were not vaccinated or not completely vaccinated. Getting the necessary shots will give the animals optimal protection against the disease. The horses get the disease from mosquito bites. Not all will die, but in the past seven years 40 percent of the infected animals died.
The Ojai Pixie Growers Association plans a new marketing technique this spring. Members of the 41 families who grow these sweet, seedless tangerines will visit grocery stores that carry the fruit to meet their customers and to encourage consumers who've not tried pixies to do so. Growers say the crop this year is good-sized, and they may harvest more than 2 million pounds. Ojai Valley pixies will be available from now through May. The group started growing pixies in 1980.Top