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» August 27, 2007 «
By the end of next year, California may overtake France in olive oil production. The California Olive Oil Council says plantings of olive trees for oil production have expanded to include 10,000 acres in 48 counties. The council says it expects California to produce more than a million gallons of extra virgin olive oil by 2010. This year's crop looks excellent now, but the final outcome depends on weather leading up to the harvest in October.
The devastating mid-August earthquake in Peru affects asparagus supplies in the U.S. Farmers in Peru can't transport their asparagus to market because the earthquake destroyed highways. But a small amount of California-grown asparagus will begin reaching market next week. The state's late-season asparagus harvest comes from Fresno County. Because of the market disruption in Peru, those farmers could see higher prices for their crop.
Three more horses have died from West Nile virus. The latest report from the California Department of Food and Agriculture says the virus has killed horses in Kern, Sacramento and San Joaquin counties since mid-August. The number of equine West Nile virus cases and fatalities has declined this year. In all, the virus has infected 12 horses in seven counties, with four deaths. The disease killed two-dozen California horses last year.
Authorities fighting the plant disease known as sudden oak death continue their work to contain it. The pathogen attacks oak trees and dozens of other plants, and has been identified in 14 coastal counties during the past decade. Officials say steps that include compliance agreements with plant nurseries appear to have halted the pathogen's spread to new counties. Sudden oak death can spread within infected counties, though, and recently was discovered in Santa Rosa.Top