Agressive Cherry Crop, Visas Issued & Budget Negotiations
I'm Lacy Gray with Washington Ag Today.
BJ Thurlby with NW Cherries says the Northwest cherry crop has been coming off aggressively.
THURLBY: We've actually been averaging over 500,000 boxes a day, so we're essentially at the peak of the season right now. So far we've shipped just over 9 million 20 pound boxes, and so far demand has been good.
Thurlby says growers have been challenged this year from the get go, having to deal with a little rain followed by higher than normal heat in the beginning of the season.
THURLBY: Now we're just working through the backend of this crop. Most of the Yakima Valley - Tri-Cities area has been harvested and there's a few late varieties here and there that guys are picking, but for the most part we're starting to get into the higher elevations.
The State Department has issued visas for roughly 90% of the workers that WAFLA had waiting at the border, stranded there due to the visa crisis which began in late May. Most of the workers are to arrive this week if all goes well and the State Department can overcome backlogs as planned. WAFLA's Dan Fazio will provide an update later this week.
Legislators began a third special session on Sunday to finish negotiations on a state operating budget. During a press conference held on Saturday lawmakers stressed that the state will not be facing a government shutdown tomorrow. No other real specifics were provided other than the incremental gas tax increase would be 11.9 cents per gallon instead of the previously passed 11.7 cents.
That's Washington Ag Today.
I'm Lacy Gray with the Ag Information Network of the West.