Sunday, June 16, 2024
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groundwater
A closer look at State Water Board probationary hearing staff reports. By Natalie Willis, Reporter, Valley Ag Voice Despite varying interests and distinct stakeholder needs, one thing Groundwater Sustainability Agencies can collectively agree on is the need to avoid a probation determination from the State Water Resources Control Board. Of the six critically overdrafted basins in the Central Valley, only the Tulare...
farm internet
The Internet of Things promises water savings. By Natalie Willis, Reporter, Valley Ag Voice Water conservation in the valley is receiving a high-tech makeover through the newly launched Internet of Things (IoT) network solution for the agriculture industry, promising to significantly advance AgTech and close the connectivity gap in fields and rural communities. The IoT network solution is a collaborative effort between...
farm irrigation
By Natalie Willis, Reporter, Valley Ag Voice Following the State Water Board’s decision to place the Tulare Lake Subbasin on probation — and upcoming probationary hearings for five critically overdrafted basins in the Central Valley — local groundwater management has become increasingly critical. Coming up on nearly a decade since the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act was signed into law by former...
By Natalie Willis, Reporter, Valley Ag Voice  Wetlands are the Earth’s largest natural source of methane — a potent greenhouse gas roughly 30 times more powerful than carbon dioxide at warming the atmosphere — according to the Department of Energy’s Larence Berkeley National Laboratory.   Methane is a key point of controversy among dairy producers and the environmental justice community given that...
By Scott Hamilton, President, Hamilton Resource Economics  On May 8, 2024, in Sacramento, representatives for the Water Blueprint for the San Joaquin Valley (Blueprint) and the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California (Metropolitan) signed a historic memorandum of understanding (MOU). The purpose of the MOU is to establish the intent of collaboration between the Parties to identify, develop, and implement...
A farmer harvesting beetroot
By Jenny Holtermann, President, Kern County Farm Bureau  Grassroots organizations, like the Kern County Farm Bureau, were created as a means to provide farmers and ranchers with an advocative voice. These organizations only work when those voices are heard and when true two-way communication is happening. In February, we started what I hope will become an annual series of Tailgate...
By Rachel Nettleton, Executive Director, Kern County Farm Bureau  Last month, I had the incredible opportunity to join my classmates of the 2024 Leadership Farm Bureau class in Washington D.C. Our days were filled with a whirlwind of activities designed to equip us with the tools and knowledge needed to navigate the intricacies of agricultural advocacy on the national stage....
By Christine Johnson, Chair, Young Farmers and Ranchers  Spring has been quite busy for the Kern Young Farmers and Ranchers. In April, we started off with a Saturday morning tour of a non-profit horse rescue operation in Shafter. Known as “All Seated in A Barn,” the facility has rehabilitated hundreds of horses and donkeys. They also house a few exotic animals,...
By Austin Snedden, Ranching Contributor, Valley Ag Voice  I recently received a call from a bull customer. I always appreciate getting calls from folks who have purchased bulls from us as almost all of them are my friends and I am humbled by their patronage. I use the word “appreciate” referring to the call rather than “enjoy” because sometimes I...
By Caleb Hampton, Assistant Editor, Ag Alert  Reprinted with permission from the California Farm Bureau Federation  California’s new farm labor organizing law has in recent months delivered a series of union wins and a string of competing allegations from employers, farmworkers and labor organizers.  In March, Wonderful Nurseries, the nation’s largest grapevine nursery, claimed United Farm Workers organizers tricked more than a...
farmer pulling carrots in field
By Valley Ag Voice Staff  Grimmway Farms, a leading global fresh produce company based in Bakersfield, announced its acquisition of Oxnard-based San Miguel Produce, Inc. in April. According to a press release, this acquisition signifies Grimmway’s strategic expansion efforts and its commitment to providing innovative product offerings to its customers.  Integrating San Miguel Produce’s fresh-cut operation expertise and resources into Grimmway’s...
By Rob McCarthy, Reporter, Ventura County  Reprinted with permission from the California Farm Bureau Federation Despite having wings, a diamondback moth isn’t much of a flier. That hasn’t stopped it from spreading across Ventura County, where cabbage is in the ground much of the year.  California cabbage growers have dealt with the moth for two centuries, according to published research. However, a...
By Christine Souza, Assistant Editor, Ag Alert  Reprinted with permission from the California Farm Bureau Federation A state determination that Southern California steelhead trout merit additional protections could mean tighter water restrictions, according to agricultural groups and water districts.  California Farm Bureau environmental policy analyst Justin Fredrickson said strengthening protections for the Southern California steelhead under the California Endangered Species Act “is...
By Caleb Hampton, Assistant Editor, Ag Alert  Reprinted with permission from the California Farm Bureau Federation  California fleet owners are scrambling to comply with new rules designed to limit emissions from diesel-powered big rigs and other heavy-duty vehicles.  These trucks and buses, while a small fraction of the state’s vehicles, emit more than half the vehicle-related pollution in California, according to regulators....
Semi Truck
By Valley Ag Voice Staff  Iowa Attorney General Brenna Bird announced the state’s entrance into a lawsuit against Robert Bonta, Attorney General of California, and Steven Cliff, executive officer of the California Air Resources Board, over California’s mandate requiring zero-emissions trucks by 2042.   Along with the state of Iowa — Nebraska, Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Montana, Oklahoma,...
orange growing on tree
Press release provided by California Citrus Mutual  California Citrus Mutual (CCM) commends Chairwoman Stabenow of the Senate Agriculture Committee and Chairman Glenn Thompson from the House Agriculture Committee for prioritizing the citrus industry’s fight against Huanglongbing (HLB) in each of their frameworks for the 2024 Farm Bill. Each Chair’s framework continues support of the Emergency Citrus Disease Research and Extension...
By Valley Ag Voice Staff  Growers interested in learning more about the potato and mushroom industries are in for a treat this June.   MUSHROOMS IN MONTEREY  The Mushroom Summit at the Monterey Conference Center will occur on June 5-6. Industry veterans, entrepreneurs, scientists, and retailers are invited to attend. The summit will showcase new research, expert insights, and hands-on activities in the...
Joshua Stevens, Faith Contributor, Valley Ag Voice  Imagine yourself in the church of Ephesus caught up in all manners of debate regarding fundamental issues to the faith. Did Christ literally come to earth? Is He of the exact nature as the Father? Must we continue to keep the law? Imagine as brothers and sisters of the faith are swept up...
By Natalie Willis, Reporter, Valley Ag Voice  During a special board meeting on May 29, the Kings County Water District voted to withdraw from the Mid-Kings River Groundwater Sustainability Agency and the joint powers authority it operates under. The motion to withdraw was made by KCWD president Barry McCutcheon — who also serves as the MKR GSA president — and...
US Capitol Building
By Natalie Willis, Reporter, Valley Ag Voice  The Republican 2024 Farm Bill passed the U.S. House Agriculture Committee on May 24, despite limited Democratic support. After completing a markup on the 942-page bill, the committee passed the proposed legislation 33-21.   Now, the Farm, Food, and National Security Act of 2024 — the long-awaited farm bill — will be brought to the...
Mary Lou Parker
Mary Lou Parker, aged 71, passed away peacefully on the morning of May 19, 2024, in Bakersfield, Calif.  She was born in Bakersfield on August 12, 1952, to Myrtle Jean Park and William “Bill” H. Park. Mary Lou was a proud mother and grandmother, known to her grandkids as “Grandma Lou-Lou.” She graduated from West High School in 1970 and would...
By Ruben Guerra, President, Latin Business Association California consumers are facing the impact of higher prices on a popular protein source — pork — in grocery stores, food trucks, and restaurant menus. Many had warned about this. Now, Congress can fix it. Last year, the U.S. Supreme Court let stand a misguided California law, Proposition 12, that critics warned would raise food...
By Natalie Willis, Reporter, Valley Ag Voice After a series of delays, House Agricultural Chair Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson released the $1.7 trillion Farm Bill draft, balancing bipartisan priorities and political initiatives. The draft was released ahead of the House Agriculture Committee’s legislative markup on May 23. Thompson published a note along with the Farm Bill draft, explaining that the bill is...
By Valley Ag Voice Staff The Punjabi American Growers’ Group is hosting a Central Valley Growers Agricultural Workshop on May 18 from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Madera Gurudwara Sahib — the Sikh Temple. The workshop will serve as a combination of a farm show, educational program, and cultural fair. The event will feature a series of panel discussions...
By Natalie Willis, Reporter, Valley Ag Voice  The California Cotton Ginners and Growers Association hosted its annual meeting on May 14 at the International Agri-Center in Tulare, providing insights into CCGGA’s activities this year as well as regulatory updates on water, pesticides, and zero-emissions vehicles.  According to Chris McGlothlin, director of technical services for CCGGA, the State Water Board is proposing...
By Natalie Willis, Reporter, Valley Ag Voice Governor Gavin Newsom’s May Revision of the state budget plan released on May 10, aims to address a “sizable deficit” of roughly $56 billion into 2026. The multi-billion-dollar deficit is in stark contrast to the $97.5 billion budget surplus that Newsom projected in the 2022-23 state budget. Several budget cuts, amounting to over $30...