Food & Farm News
Audio ActualityFarmers' problems harvesting tomatoes in the Medfly quarantine zone
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» September 19, 2007 «
Establishment of a fruit fly quarantine in Solano County affects tomato farmers trying to send their crops to market. State officials set a 114 square-mile quarantine zone around Dixon yesterday (Tuesday). Crews have found Mediterranean fruit flies and Medfly larvae in the city. The quarantine limits farmers' ability to move produce. That will complicate work and raise costs for tomato farmers near Dixon, who have ripe fruit they need to ship to processors.
Another California county has established new rules on scrap-metal dealers, in an effort to combat a rash of metal thefts from farms, businesses, schools and homes. San Joaquin County supervisors adopted an anti-metal theft ordinance yesterday. They also encouraged local cities to adopt similar rules. The new county rules require dealers to change how they pay for metals and take other steps to assure they're not receiving stolen metal.
Macadamia nut growers in Southern California have their orchards ready for harvest. That usually starts about October 1st, but may be delayed this year because of the cold weather in January. Trees on the periphery of orchards took the biggest hit from the freeze, and have fewer nuts. Most farmers still expect a good macadamia crop, but worry about threatened water cuts that could reduce next year's production.
Ranchette development and low crop prices have combined to reduce seed garlic acreage in Northeastern California. Farmers have raised seed garlic in the intermountain areas of Mono, Shasta and Lassen counties. But retirees have been buying ranchettes of 10 to 20 acres, which breaks up land that could grow seed garlic. And farmers have not been able to earn profitable prices for the crop, in part because of garlic imports from China.Top