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» September 2, 2005 «
"Brace yourselves," was the advice an oil industry analyst gave to farmers at a meeting in Sacramento yesterday (Thursday). The representative of the California Independent Oil Marketers Association predicted higher diesel fuel prices. Refinery problems in California have added upward pressure to fuel prices already affected by hurricane damage along the Gulf Coast. The analyst said farmers and truckers should expect higher fuel costs for the rest of the harvest season.
Walnut production in California will set a record this year, according to a preseason prediction issued by government forecasters yesterday. Farmers should harvest 340 thousand tons of walnuts, a 5 percent increase from last year. More walnut trees have come into production this year and the average number of nuts per tree has risen slightly, as well. California farms produce virtually all domestically grown walnuts.
A newly developed training course aims to reach the people who often form the front line of farm security. The course, developed by an institute at the University of California, Davis, trains workers on dairy farms to recognize and prevent potential acts of "agroterrorism." The materials, in Spanish and English, include a manual and what's described as a comic-book-style novella. The course has been tested on several California dairy farms this summer.
"Inspired by Life" will be the theme for export promotions being launched this month by the California Wine Institute. The promotions aim to boost exports to more than 20 foreign markets. Programs include in-store promotions in the United Kingdom, trips by California winemakers to European capitals and visits to California by Japanese wine buyers. California wine exports rose nearly 30 percent last year.
On the Calendar:
"Sunny Days and Western Ways" in the theme, as the Mariposa County Fair starts today (Friday) in Mariposa.