Farm News Roundup
With water concerns, COVID-19 effects, and many growing seasons in full swing, there is so much happening right now in California agriculture. Here is a quick round up of a few developing stories from around the state courtesy of the California Farm Bureau Federation.
Amid discussions about how much river flow needs to be dedicated to fish, an ongoing study indicates predators eat half or more of protected salmon—regardless of flow levels. A fishery consulting firm working on the lower Stanislaus River says bass and other fish eat many juvenile salmon, and that the losses don’t appear connected to flows in the river. A state plan would require more water to remain in rivers and therefore unavailable for human use.
Efforts continue to provide COVID-19 vaccines to California farm employees. Farmers and ranchers have been scheduling clinics at their individual farms, to supplement those organized by farm groups. With vaccines now more widely available, the groups say they are working to encourage vaccine use. For example, the Farm Employers Labor Service will host a webinar next week to inform farm employees about vaccine effectiveness and safety.
With cherry harvest beginning in the San Joaquin Valley, marketers say they expect a large crop of high quality—and that people who pick and pack cherries will be protected against the pandemic. The California Cherry Board says farmers and packers have worked to vaccinate their employees, and that safeguards inaugurated last season remain in place. The California cherry harvest will continue through mid-June.
(Source: California Farm Bureau Federation)