Food & Farm News
» April 25, 2012 «
After reporting yesterday (Tuesday) that a dairy cow in California had been diagnosed with the cattle disease BSE, federal and state authorities said the cow did not enter the food chain and posed no threat to the food supply. It is the only time the disease has been confirmed in a cow in California. State Food and Agriculture Secretary Karen Ross said “numerous safeguards” prevent BSE from entering the food chain.
Fresh, California-grown sweet corn from the Imperial Valley is in its second full week of harvest and farmers report a much-improved crop with outstanding quality and flavor. Warm weather in March and April provided favorable growing conditions … a big improvement from last year, when a damaging freeze hit the valley. Sweet corn will be available through the summer, with many supermarkets likely to offer specials particularly before Memorial Day.
There's a shift underway in the wool business, according to a company that markets much of the wool produced in California. More ranchers with smaller flocks are moving their sheep into fields near cities and vineyards, to help control grasses and other plants. Wool buyers say they've seen increases in wool production volume, but demand has lagged a bit due to overall world economic conditions.
In Washington this week, the US Senate Agriculture Committee works on details of legislation to set federal farm policy for the next several years. Most of the spending in the farm bill goes toward nutrition-assistance programs for consumers. In California, farmers will be particularly interested in conservation programs and those that support research, promote export sales and prevent pests and diseases.Top