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Nut Crops

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Almond Pollination 2022: Economic Outlook and Other Considerations

In this article, we summarize some considerations for the 2022 almond pollination season, including results from a 2021 survey of commercial beekeepers regarding their almond pollination agreements. The survey results provide insights on pollination fees, agreement details related to advance payment and limiting pesticide exposure as well as beekeeper preferences for bee-friendly cover crop mixes. Almond Industry Update Almond prices rebounded this summer due to a lower-than-anticipated almond crop for the 2021-22 marketing year following roughly a year of low almond prices. Relatively low competition from other exporting countries, coupled with steady growth in almond demand have kept almond prices...

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Pollinator Efforts Lead to Prestigious Sustainability Award for Almond Board of California

The past October, the North American Pollinator Protection Campaign (NAPPC) presented its Business for Bees Sustainability Award, an honor reserved for standout organizations that go above and beyond to support pollinators, to the Almond Board of California (ABC) and the state’s almond farmers. “This is about their long-term dedication to supporting all pollinators in their orchards and throughout our ecosystem,” said Kelly Rourke, executive director of Pollinator Partnership, which founded NAPPC 21 years ago. “We’ve worked with them for many years, and this is well-deserved recognition of their steadfast commitment to engaging farmers in pollinator conservation on multiple levels. The...

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California Legislative Recap for 2021

The 2021 legislative session was an interesting one, still subject to COVID-19 restrictions limiting access to the Capitol, but bolstered by a big surplus budget. All in all, things could have been far worse. The following is a brief summary on the bills we felt were most important to the tree nut industry during this year’s session. AB 73 (R. Rivas) Current law requires the State Department of Public Health and the Office of Emergency Services to establish a personal protective equipment (PPE) stockpile, and requires the department to establish guidelines for the procurement, management and distribution of PPE, taking...

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Sweet Flavor Keeps Chestnut Buyers Coming Back for More

Chestnuts are not just a Christmas season specialty. The familiar Christmas song gained this unique tree nut a place at the holiday table, but its sweet flavor places chestnuts among the ingredients for many dishes prepared year-round. Joe and Jenni Avila, chestnut growers in the Modesto area, were familiar with chestnut use in Portuguese cuisine when they began growing chestnuts, but found their customers of diverse ethnic backgrounds value chestnuts for their sweet flavor. The Avila family operation, The Chestnut Farm, grows, harvests, processes and sells chestnuts onsite. Weeks prior to Christmas, in most years, they must hang their ‘sold...

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Joseph Jackson on “Doing What Matters”

Farming has been practically inescapable for most of Joseph Jackson’s life, and it’s become his livelihood. Jackson, a part-time grower himself and account manager with Phytech, helped his father grow row crops and stone fruits for much of his childhood in the Kettleman City area. It wasn’t until the early 2000s when his father shifted to farming almonds that he entered the world of tree nuts. “Like a lot of people in the [Central] Valley, he saw the great prices of almonds and pistachios and thought, ‘Hey, I gotta get in on that as well,’” Jackson said, noting however that...

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