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» March 4, 2005 «
As all three branches of the federal government grapple with plans to resume imports of Canadian cattle, California ranchers watch to see how the results affect markets. The U.S. Senate passed a resolution yesterday (Thursday) disapproving of administration plans to reopen imports ... a day after a judge temporarily blocked the plan. California ranchers say they expect prices for live cattle to fall when Canadian imports resume ... unless Japan reopens its market to U.S. beef.
A trade body has ruled that the United States must change its cotton program, leaving farmers unsure about the eventual impact. A spokesman for the California cotton cooperative Calcot says it's difficult to say how the ruling will affect the state's farmers. The World Trade Organization ruled yesterday that U.S. payments to cotton farmers violate trade rules. The U.S. may need to change its cotton program in response. It is also seeking worldwide reforms in global trade talks.
It's been a slow start for the asparagus harvest in the San Joaquin Delta. Rains have left the fields muddy, although those with good drainage remain accessible. Farmers who have contracts with supermarket chains are harvesting. Those without contracts are waiting, in hopes that prices will improve. Mexican asparagus is flooding the U.S. market, keeping prices below California production costs.
The "good fat" in avocados helps the body absorb nutrients from a variety of fruits and vegetables, according to newly published nutrition research. In a study at the Ohio State University, men and women ate salad and salsa with and without avocados. Results showed that the monounsaturated fat in avocados allowed participants to absorb more lycopene, beta-carotene and other nutrients.
On the Calendar:
The theme is "Moo-ing in the Right Direction," as the California Mid-Winter Fair starts today (Friday) in Imperial. The annual Blossom Days Festival occurs tomorrow (Saturday) in Sanger, and the Great Western Livestock Show opens in Tulare.