California Blueberry Crop Down and Red Meat Exports Solid, But
**Blueberry growers in parts of Northern and Central California are picking a smaller crop this year after losing fruit to spring frost and hail.
The California Blueberry Commission estimates that farms will produce 55 million pounds of fresh berries this year.
That’s down from an original projection of 65 million pounds and nearly 20 million pounds less than the 2021 crop total.
**At last week’s spring conference, U.S. Meat Export Federation President Dan Halstrom gave attendees a report on first-quarter red meat exports, which were impressive despite mounting economic and logistical challenges.
He’s optimistic that 2022 results will be strong but cautioned inflation pressures are constricting consumer spending power.
Halstrom says, demand for U.S. red meat has been as strong as he’s ever seen it and remarkably resilient, but the question is at what point do inflationary pressures start to constrict disposable income for the global consumer?
**The USDA announced new regulations for the poultry industry that the National Chicken Council isn’t supporting.
NCC President Mike Brown says, “This is a solution looking for a problem.”
“The last thing the administration should be doing is pushing increased regulations, red tape, and costs onto businesses at a time of record inflation and input costs.”
The NCC says this will do nothing to lower food prices, increase competition, or reduce inflation.