Christmas Tree Farms Surge in Early Attendance
Here are a few timely agricultural stories from around the state, courtesy of the California Farm Bureau Federation.
Choose-and-cut Christmas tree farms report surges in early attendance—a trend they attribute in part to people wanting to decorate their homes early during the pandemic. The president of the California Christmas Tree Association says the opening day of sales at her farm was one of the biggest she’s ever experienced. Christmas tree farms that have opened this season have modified operations or eliminated some activities to accommodate distancing and other health protocols.
Canned fruits and vegetables continue to see increased retail sales. Farmers and marketers say they expect that trend to continue as winter sets in and COVID-19 cases rise. One canner says it’s preparing for a greater-than-usual spike in sales during the holidays. Supplies of canned fruit became short at times early in the pandemic, but processors and retailers say they have taken steps to avoid that in coming weeks.
Agricultural aviators say they stand ready to help fight wildfires, but that Cal Fire rarely calls on them. The chairman of the California Agricultural Aviation Association says 37 single-engine air tankers could have been available during severe fires this fall. A Cal Fire spokesman says the agency allows front-line commanders to decide what planes to deploy. Incident commanders typically order twin-engine air tankers, rather than single-engine planes.
[Source: California Farm Bureau Federation]