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Helping Stevia Brave the Cold

It’s a fact – humans love sugar. For those of us who also like to watch our calories, sugar substitutes can help. Some zero-calorie or low-calorie sweeteners have attracted bad reputations for containing unnatural ingredients. But there are also natural sweeteners derived from plants, like stevia Stevia is hundreds of times sweeter than sugar, and it has no calories. The …

USDA Extends Application Deadline for the Quality Loss Adjustment Program

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is extending the deadline from March 5 to April 9 for agricultural producers to apply for the Quality Loss Adjustment (QLA) Program because of recent winter storms and some clarifications to program rules. This program assists producers who suffered crop quality losses due to qualifying 2018 and 2019 natural disasters. “Because of recent winter …

USDA Reminds Producers of Disaster Assistance Application Deadline

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) reminds producers that the deadline to submit applications for disaster recovery assistance through the Wildfire and Hurricane Indemnity Program Plus (WHIP+) for 2018 and 2019 losses is Friday, Oct. 30. Additionally, USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) launched a new tool on farmers.gov to help producers with the application process. The new tool documents information about a producer’s operation and helps …

Farm Bureau Releases Fire Policy and Legislative Recommendations

Napa County Farm Bureau — The recent wildfires in Napa County have had a dramatic impact on the way we live and work and have once again demonstrated the need for better fire prevention practices to mitigate the impact subsequent fires have in our region. The Napa County Farm Bureau has consistently addressed this issue for the last two years …

California Must Become a Fire-Adapted Civilization, UCCE Expert Says

The vast California acreage burned in 2020 and the protracted smoky skies should signal state residents and officials to adapt to a new reality, reported Ezra David Romero on Capital Public Radio. The 4 million acres of wildland burned this year isn’t unprecedented. Before 1800, 4.5 million or more burned every year in California, according to a UC Berkeley study. Tragic …

Reality of the Wildfire Impact on the 2020 Winegrape Crop

Many of our wine grape industry friends and families have been impacted by the recent wildfires, and our hearts and prayers go out to them. Although vineyards tend to act as fire breaks helping to mitigate the spread of these wildfires, growers and winemakers are concerned about what the smoke exposure impact will have on the 2020 vintage.  Please watch …

Managing Heat In California Avocado Groves

California Avocado Commission — According to a new report released by the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) and the Climate Science Alliance, Southern California agricultural regions will face more climate extremes — notably higher daily maximum temperatures and more frequent and intense heat events — in the coming decades. As Dr. Ben Faber notes in a recent blog post, although avocado groves have …

CAWG Addresses Grape Grower & Winemaker Smoke Exposure Challenges

Last month’s widespread lightning storms resulted in multiple fast-moving and devastating wildfires that affected many regions of the state. More than 1 million acres have burned, resulting in lives lost, damaged structures and property, and smoke-filled days. These wildfires have produced unprecedented challenges for California’s winegrape growers and wineries. Growers and wineries have been challenged to determine with certainty how …

Emergency Mortality Disposal Advisory Update

As an update to outdated information shared last week, the following has been provided from a variety agencies including CDFA, RB-5, CalRecycle, various county agricultural commissioners and divisions of environmental health and rendering companies. It represents our best understanding of current requirements, but these may change without notice. Summary   The current heat event has strained the state’s rendering capacity. …

Protecting Workers from Unhealthy Air Due to Wildfire Smoke

Cal/OSHA is reminding employers that California’s protection from wildfire smoke standard is still in effect, and they must take steps to protect their workers from harmful exposure to unhealthy air due to wildfire smoke. “Employers are obligated to protect their outdoor workers and must evaluate the health hazards posed by wildfire smoke,” said Cal/OSHA Chief Doug Parker. “If employers cannot …

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