Food & Farm News
2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009
2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005
» September 15, 2005 «
More than 20 years of talks brought agreement between the United States and Europe yesterday (Wednesday) on key rules governing wine sales. That's important news for California winemakers, because two thirds of their exports go to European nations. Among other things, the agreement allows existing American wines to continue using European place names such as "burgundy" and "champagne" on their labels. The Wine Institute says the agreements represent "outstanding progress."
As Congress prepares disaster aid for Gulf Coast farmers, the American Farm Bureau says a comprehensive disaster-relief package will be needed. In a letter to key representatives yesterday, Farm Bureau noted that farmers in many parts of the nation face weather-related obstacles this year. Along with hurricane damage in the Southeast, there has been drought in the Midwest and other problems elsewhere. Farm Bureau said farmers in many regions have a "mounting sense of alarm" about the harvest.
Almond farmers report that their crop looks lighter than current estimates. Government forecasters predict farmers will harvest 880 million pound of almonds, but growers say weather and insects have reduced the crop. Rain at bloom time during the spring hampered pollination of the main almond variety. Then a hot July took a further toll. Experts say it is too soon to say how much lighter the crop may be, but most agree it won't be a calamity.
Horseradish harvest began yesterday near the California-Oregon border. Farmers in Tulelake began the harvest two weeks earlier than last year. That's encouraging, because snow in late October destroyed part of last year's horseradish crop. Most of the crop is sold in Oregon and California. Higher transportation costs have left Eastern buyers hesitant to order Tulelake horseradish, until fuel prices come down.
On the Calendar:
Today (Thursday) is Opening Day for the Lodi Grape Festival and Harvest Fair in Lodi, and for Harvest Festivals in both Kerman and Sanger.