Threat of Early Spring, Deadline Extension and Ag Maps
I'm Lacy Gray with Washington Ag Today.
NW Cherries' BJ Thurlby says that it appears spring is coming 2 weeks earlier than normal this year, which means producers will be on the defensive for frost.
THURLBY: I don't think they're necessarily out rushing the orchard forward trying to make sure that we have a a bloom or a crop; what they're more worried about - the early onset of a frost season, which is what we've got here. That just means a longer heating season.
Thurlby says that longer heating season for growers equates in to a much larger cost for fuel, electricity and labor to protect their investment.
THURLBY: Probably the good news, at least from this point, is that it gets us with a crop on the market in time for the 4th of July, which is always a positive.
USDA recently announced that farmers now have until March 31 to update yield history or reallocate base acres for participating in Agriculture Risk Coverage or Price Loss Coverage programs. The original deadline was February 27. This extension now coincides with the March 31 deadline for producers to choose ARC or PLC coverage. For more information growers should contact their local FSA office before the March 31 deadline.
Each year the WSDA produces two maps illustrating the role agriculture plays in the economy of each of Washington's 39 counties. It may come as no surprise that eight of the top 10 farm counties are located in Eastern Washington, but the distribution of food processing is more even, with the top 10 including five counties in Western Washington and five in Eastern Washington. Data to produce these maps is provided by NASS. To view the maps visit WSDA's website.
That's Washington Ag Today.
I'm Lacy Gray with the Ag Information Network of the West.