Food & Farm News
January 28, 2015
Surveyors will find little snow
A skimpy snowpack awaits surveyors from the state Department of Water Resources, who will conduct a monthly check on Thursday. Electronic readings show the Sierra Nevada snowpack at only about one-quarter of average for the date. The state water board has already warned water-rights holders to prepare for reductions this year. The board said it might need to curtail water rights again, as it did last year, unless “significant precipitation” occurs in the next few months.
Dairy farmers expect lower prices
Milk prices earned by California dairy farmers have started to fall from the high levels they hit last year, as the result of growing supplies coupled with reduced export demand. But farmers say they hope to avoid a sharp economic downturn such as one that hit five years ago, which forced a number of dairies out of business. One difference this time, farmers say, is that feed prices have moderated as a result of large supplies from the Midwest.
‘Milk truth’ campaign launches
To promote the nutritional value of milk, farmers and processors have launched a social-media campaign using the hashtag “milktruth.” The campaign directs people to a “milk truth” website, which says milk provides nine essential nutrients and describes dairy milk as “America’s top food source” of calcium, vitamin D and potassium. Sponsors of the media campaign say they want people to “get real” about the nutritional value of milk and dairy products.
Wine and Grape Symposium opens
Sacramento becomes the center of the wine world this week, as it hosts an event billed as “the largest wine and grape trade show in the Americas.” An estimated 14,000 people will attend the Unified Wine and Grape Symposium, to listen to seminars and visit more than 700 displays of equipment, supplies and services. On Wednesday, a “state of the industry” conference will look at vineyard-planting patterns, wine-sales trends and other factors.