Wednesday, November 1, 2017
Ranchers assess wildfire toll on animals, land
Ranchers who had animals and pastureland in the Northern California wildfire zone continue to tally the impact of the fires. It’s not yet known how many animals died in the October fires. For animals that survived, feed will be a concern because of scorched pastures. Ranchers will have to provide hay for their livestock. In addition, ranchers will need to replace fences burned by the fires.
Cotton farmers expect high-quality crop
Improved water supplies have led to larger cotton plantings in the Central Valley this year. Acreage grew by more than one-third, compared to a year ago. Farmers say they hope for dry weather during cotton harvest, to ensure crop quality. California farms have a reputation for producing high-quality cotton. A government crop report shows the California cotton harvest about 30 percent complete, with nearly all of the crop rated in “excellent” condition.
Agritourism benefits from social media
Social media has become a bigger factor for agritourism operations. The University of California agritourism coordinator says travelers do everything on mobile devices, and expect to find farm sites on social media. For example, the Apple Hill Growers Association east of Sacramento created an app listing its members’ operations. Several Apple Hill patrons said they decided to visit after seeing friends post social media photos from the farms.
New national FFA president comes from California
A college student from Lodi has been elected president of the National FFA Organization. Breanna Holbert majors in agricultural education at Chico State University, and says she aspires to teach urban students about sustainable agriculture. She was elected national FFA leader at the organization’s convention in Indianapolis. Holbert is the first female African American to serve as national FFA president.