Food & Farm News
February 25, 2015
Exports of farm goods remain backlogged
Despite an agreement between West Coast ports and dockworkers, agricultural exporters say they’ll be dealing with problems from the labor dispute for months ahead. Businesses that ship citrus fruit, nuts, rice, hay and other products say it will take a long time to clear the backlog of shipments delayed by the port slowdown. One citrus packer says farmers will continue “to feel the reverberation of this for months to come.”
Almonds depend on bees
This is a key time of year for California almond growers, as bees pollinate blooming trees. Most almond growers rent bees from beekeepers who move hives into the orchards during bloom. But as the bee business has experienced challenges in recent years, more farmers consider going into beekeeping themselves. Farmers who have done so say it gives them more control over pollination, but others say they depend on the specialized knowledge that beekeepers bring.
Tour links small farmers with buyers
A group of beginning farmers from the greater Bay Area toured the San Francisco wholesale produce market and visited with other potential buyers Tuesday, as part of a University of California project to widen markets for crops grown by small-scale farmers. The tours aim to help new farmers learn what wholesale produce buyers want. UC held a similar tour last week for small-scale and immigrant farmers from the Fresno area.
Young farmers, ranchers donate food
There will be a friendly competition as part of a young farmers’ conference in Sacramento this weekend, as Young Farmers and Ranchers chapters from around California compare which group can donate the most produce. The food will be donated to a Sacramento food bank. Young farmer groups around the state donated nearly 13 million pounds of food last year, part of a nationwide effort that yielded almost 42 million pounds of food contributed to food banks.