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» December 3, 2007 «
The pressing concerns facing California family farmers and ranchers will be discussed as California Farm Bureau Federation members gather for the organization's Annual Meeting. Delegates from around the state will debate Farm Bureau positions on issues including water policy, immigration reform, federal farm policy and rural crime prevention. The meeting starts today (Monday) in Sparks, Nevada.
The first significant rain since October came as a welcome change for Southern California ranchers. Rain fell over much of the region Friday, and that will help range grasses to germinate. Ranchers say they hope that the rain will revive pastures to the degree that they can stop hauling feed to their cattle. Rangeland throughout the state has been in poor shape for much of this year, but the problem has been especially severe in Southern California.
Avocado demand in the United States has risen rapidly the past decade. Analysts say Americans consume an average of 3.3 pounds of avocados per person. That's almost double the consumption levels seen 10 years ago. At the same time, domestic avocado production … mostly from California … increased about 18 percent a year. A government report says imported avocados have fulfilled portions of the rapidly growing demand.
Expanding worldwide demand for high-quality food products should result in more farm exports being shipped by air, according to an updated report. The study from Fresno State University says the value of airborne agricultural exports from California has risen sharply compared to 10 years ago. For example, more than three-quarters of California-grown cherries sold overseas are shipped by airfreight. Japan represents the top destination for exports sent by air.Top