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» April 6, 2006 «
Orchards are flooding along the Sacramento River in Butte and Glenn counties, as a result of rain and increased releases from Shasta Dam. But farm advisors say they expect little long-term damage, as long as water continues to flow rather than sit in the orchards. Downstream, flood-control officials continue to channel water into the Yolo Bypass ... further dampening farmers' hopes to plant crops there.
Despite delays caused by frequent spring rains, marketers say asparagus should be in plentiful supply for Easter. The California Asparagus Commission says farmers have been taking advantage of gaps between rain showers. Workers in mud-caked boots move more slowly through fields, limiting the amounts they can pick. Growers say thus far the asparagus has been mostly spared by plant diseases that rain can bring.
High quality Central Valley farmland continues to be turned into urban development, according to a study by American Farmland Trust. The study says prime farmland accounted for more than half of the Central Valley land to be developed in the last 10 years. The trust suggests state and local policy changes to provide for more efficient development of homes, to accommodate the region's growing population.
Calling it one way to fight childhood obesity, state officials want to increase fruit and vegetable consumption by California schoolchildren. To aid in that effort, the state Department of Food and Agriculture conducted a seminar yesterday (Wednesday) in Sacramento. The session provided ideas to farmers about how to sell produce directly to schools. A recently signed law provides $18 million dollars to increase consumption of fruits and vegetables in California schools.Top