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» September 18, 2008 «
Cling peach harvest in California is 14 percent less than last year. The California Canning Peach Association says yields per acre also declined. As a result, canneries' inventories will be tight this year and canners will have to manage to maintain an adequate supply for consumers. Canning peach harvest in Spain and Greece, where growers compete for the U.S. market, is larger; however, the weaker dollar may slow imports this year.
Consumers rely on plant breeders to provide affordable food. Yet, most consumers are unaware of that profession. Seed companies say there is a shortage of qualified plant breeders. The University of California, Davis, has developed a plant-breeding academy to quickly fill industry needs. Participants from all over the world develop new skills through on-site classes and individual study. Breeders are developing new plant varieties that produce more food for consumers and are easier for farmers to grow.
San Diego County property owners reacted favorably Wednesday (September 17) as state and county crews treated their property for Asian citrus psyllid, according to the California Department of Food and Agriculture. Citrus and closely related plants were treated with an organic compound. A systemic product was also injected into the ground. There will be two follow-up treatments of the same properties at seven-day intervals. Asian citrus psyllid can carry a disease that kills citrus trees; thus far, however, insects trapped in San Diego County are disease free.
A model farm in a wind tunnel has allowed researchers to develop procedures for farmers to position buildings that minimize wind-driven odor. During a three-year study, the scientists learned that placing farm buildings perpendicular to prevailing winds would reduce odors downwind from lagoons or tanks. Buildings positioned perpendicular to the wind disrupted the wind flow, which reduces the spread of odors. The findings could help farmers and their neighbors solve a major problem.Top