Food & Farm News
» July 7, 2005 «
As the Legislature prepares to vote on a final state budget, farm groups work to analyze how it may affect services important to farmers and ranchers. California Farm Bureau President Bill Pauli says programs within the state's agricultural, environmental and resources agencies can all affect day-to-day farm and ranch operations. He says farmers will also watch to see if the state imposes new fees for services it provides.
A final report on California's 2004 crop year shows that the state's farmers produced more than previously thought, for two key crops. The U.S. Agriculture Department revised upward its figure for the California grape harvest ... though the 2004 crop remained smaller than the previous year's. It also added to its earlier estimate for the state's top tree crop, almonds, and increased its estimated on-farm value to $2.2 billion.
By changing the atmosphere in fruit-storage facilities, researchers say they can kill bugs while retaining the appearance and taste of the fruit. Government scientists in Washington and California developed the pesticide-free technique for treating fruit before it is shipped to other countries. They say fruit pests died when researchers placed apples, cherries, peaches and nectarines in special chambers and treated the fruit by raising the temperature, decreasing the oxygen and increasing carbon dioxide.
A new Agricultural Sustainability Institute received a significant boost yesterday (Wednesday). The University of California, Davis, announced a $1.5 million foundation gift to support the institute. The WK Kellogg Foundation gave the money to establish an endowed chair in sustainable food systems. UC Davis says it will soon offer an undergraduate major in sustainable agriculture.
On the Calendar:
The theme is "Who Let the Pigs Out?" as the Kings Fair opens today (Thursday) in Hanford.