Food & Farm News
Audio ActualityRancher's comments about range conditions in Southern California
Real Audio (Real Player required)
2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009
2008 | 2007 | 2006 | 2005
» December 21, 2005 «
As winter officially begins today (Wednesday), Southern California cattle ranchers hope for rain. Most of California's autumn storms added moisture to Northern California, but didn't reach the southern parts of the state. Some Southern California ranchers have already started hauling hay to their animals, to supplement their feed until rain germinates rangeland grasses. Southern California had four dry years prior to last season and ranchers worry that they may face another one.
Long-standing disputes about wine labeling and manufacturing took another step toward resolution yesterday (Tuesday). European Union farm ministers ratified a wine trade agreement with the United States. Under the agreement, European nations recognize winemaking practices used in the U.S. In turn, the U.S. Congress will be asked to limit American winemakers' use of European regional names, such as burgundy and champagne.
As more states enact laws to open direct shipments from wineries to consumers, California wineries say they're still learning how to comply with the new laws. States must conform to a U.S. Supreme Court decision that struck down bans on interstate wine shipments. Vintners say each state has different rules. Now that holiday time has accelerated orders, California wineries find themselves scrambling to comply with the variety of new state laws.
Many people enjoy brussels sprouts with their holiday meals, and California farmers say shoppers should find ample supplies. Farmers grow brussels sprouts along the coast in Santa Cruz and San Mateo counties, and say harvest should continue through mid-January. Demand has been steady. Farmers say their yield may be a bit less than it was last year, when the harvest totaled nearly 20,000 tons of brussels sprouts.Top