Food & Farm News
» January 23, 2013 «
Many California flower growers say they were spared widespread damage from the recent cold weather, thanks to greenhouses, hoop houses and other protective coverings that shielded most flowers from the cold. Growers say flowers had grown rapidly during mild weather earlier in the winter, but the cold snap slowed things down a bit. Barring any future weather challenges, farmers say they expect to have a good crop of flowers ready for Valentine's Day.
As they prepare for the 2013 season, Salinas Valley growers say they're considering factors beyond markets and weather … such as whether they'll be able to hire enough people to harvest their crops. The area known as “the nation's salad bowl” is busy, as growers plant vegetables. Cauliflower and broccoli are the focus of much of the activity now, and lettuce will be planted shortly. Many growers say they're concerned about having enough employees available to help harvest later this year.
California-raised beef reached plates across the globe last year, contributing to the nation's largest beef export value to date. The U.S. Meat Export Federation anticipates that when the final reports come in, beef export totals for 2012 will surpass $5 billion dollars. Exports to locations such as Japan and Hong Kong are expected to increase this year. Those two destinations, along with South Korea, represent the top export markets for California beef.
Thousands of birds find a resting place on their annual migration in harvested corn, rice and forage fields in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. Rice farmers in the Sacramento Valley have worked for years to coordinate farm activities to benefit migrating wildlife, and now more delta farmers are also testing field flooding and draining programs. The harvested fields provide refuge and food for the birds and other animals.Top