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» June 29, 2007 «
After expressing disappointment at a U.S. Senate vote that stalled a comprehensive immigration bill, farm groups said they will continue to press for reform of the nation's immigration laws. California Farm Bureau President Doug Mosebar said yesterday (Thursday) that the current immigration system must be fixed. Mosebar said Farm Bureau remains committed to reform that secures the borders while making sure that farms and ranches can hire the skilled people they need.
Winegrape growers throughout the state report their crops appear to be developing properly. So far, vineyards remain free of disease. Farmers say it is too early to tell for certain, but the crop could be heavier than last year. It depends on the weather between now and harvest. Picking could start earlier than usual, with white zinfandel grapes leading the way as early as August 5th, a week ahead of average.
On-farm programs aimed at promoting air quality, water quality and soil conservation will benefit from federal grants announced this week. Eleven California projects will share nearly $3 million awarded through the Conservation Innovative Grants program. The grants cover up to half the cost of each project. The Natural Resources Conservation Service says the program seeks innovative approaches to environmental enhancement on working lands.
Child nutrition programs and other food-assistance efforts will benefit from a purchase of canned apricots announced yesterday by the U.S. Agriculture Department. The USDA said it would buy up to 9.5 million pounds of canned apricots. More than 90 percent of domestically grown apricots come from California. The USDA says it anticipates an oversupply of canned fruit on the market this yearTop