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» June 13, 2008 «
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has declared a state of emergency in nine Central Valley counties due to severe water shortages. He orders state agencies to help provide additional water supplies to farms and cities. He also directed that groundwater be transported through the California Aqueduct to provide additional water for farmers to save their crops. The operational changes are to be made immediately.
Wildfires have damaged rangeland and timber in three California counties, but thus far other farms have escaped damage. The Butte County fires have destroyed range grasses and one out building thus far but have been kept away from fields of other commodities. In southern Monterey County range grass has also been lost, but ranchers in both counties had moved their cattle prior to the fire. One vineyard is close to the Monterey County fire, but so far not damaged. In Santa Cruz County fire is threatening a timber farm.
California dairy farmers will earn about 20 cents more per gallon for their milk beginning July 1. The California Department of Food and Agriculture announced the farm milk price then will be $1.94 per gallon. Increasing prices for cheese, butter and powdered milk produced the increase. Prices farmers earn have been volatile this spring and are still 7 cents less than they were in December. But farmers costs for energy and feed have steadily increased all year.
California asparagus season is about over. Farmers in the delta have ended harvest operations, but a few Salinas Valley growers are still picking. However, predicted 85-degree temperatures for the weekend in the Salinas Valley will hasten the season end. Farmers earned better prices this year, but the volume was lower. The California Asparagus Commission reports growers didn't lose money as they have the past few years. There may be limited supplies of California asparagus available this fall.Top