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» May 17, 2007 «
A new county has joined the list of those where the light brown apple moth has been found. State officials confirmed yesterday (Wednesday) that they had trapped a moth in a residential area of Napa. Crews have been setting more traps to see if there may be more moths nearby. More than 2,000 of the moths have been trapped in eight other Northern California counties. The pest feeds on plant leaves, shoots and fruit, and threatens numerous California-grown crops.
A one-two punch from freeze and drought makes farmers and ranchers in 13 California counties eligible for disaster aid. The US Agriculture Department said yesterday it had declared disasters in the counties. The move allows affected farmers and ranchers to apply for low-interest loans to help them recover. Dry weather has been a particular concern for livestock ranchers, who have seen pastureland deteriorate rapidly this spring.
One result of the January freeze is now manifesting itself on the vegetable market. Farmers in the Salinas Valley say many of them got a late start in planting due to the cold weather, and now there's an oversupply of vegetables going to market. The surge in supply has reduced on-farm prices for lettuce and other vegetables. Farmers predict this will be a short-term issue but say they are monitoring it closely.
Eating fresh grapes appears to protect against diabetes, according to a study newly published in the Journal of Nutrition. Government researchers fed grapes, in powder form, to laboratory rodents. The scientists found that the grapes significantly reduced the incidence of diabetes among the animals. The study credits naturally occurring antioxidants in grapes for providing the health benefit.Top