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» October 12, 2007 «
It's a tale of "famine to feast" in California olive groves. After an extremely small crop last season, farmers have seen production rebound sharply this fall. The larger overall crop means that individual olives have been smaller in some groves. Other farmers pruned their trees earlier in the season to assure they'd have larger-sized olives to sell. The Olive Growers Council estimates that about 40 percent of the crop has been harvested so far.
Consumers will likely see a lot more carrots in the market this fall. Government crop estimators say California farmers have sharply increased their carrot acreage for autumn harvest. Planted acres are up by one-third, compared to a year ago. A crop report says farmers have seen a back-to-school jump in demand for baby carrots. Acreage of most other California-grown vegetables will be down by 7 or 8 percent this fall.
Farmers who grow Asian pear varieties say their crops show excellent quality and good size. Farmers say cooler-than-average temperatures in September and October helped boost fruit size. Harvest will end about November 1st, but Asian pears hold up well in cold storage. That means retail stores will have fruit available for several more months. Most commercial production of Asian pears occurs in Fresno County, with smaller plantings in other parts of the state.
Teachers will go to school about farming and ranching, during an annual conference that begins today (Friday) in Pacific Grove. More than 250 teachers from throughout California will attend the conference sponsored by the California Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom. Teachers will learn about farm water use, food safety, nutrition and other topics, and how they can weave that knowledge into their classroom lesson plans.Top