California Citrus Mutual on Chinese Tariff Announcement

Len Wilcox California Corner, Industry News Release

California Citrus Mutual (CCM) President Joel Nelsen issued the following statement regarding the Chinese government’s announcement that it will impose a 15 percent tariff increase on U.S. fruits and vegetables, including California citrus, as a retaliatory counter to President Donald Trump’s new tariffs on steel and aluminum. “The decision by the Chinese government to levy exorbitant tariff increases on U.S. …

California Judge Stops CDFA Pest Control Spraying

Len Wilcox California Corner

A California Superior Court judge has ordered the state’s Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) to temporarily stop spraying pesticides for agricultural pest control. The judge decided in favor of a lawsuit filed by 11 environmental activist groups and the city of Berkeley. Private citizens will still be able to use chemical insecticides on their property, but the order requires …

citrus greening

HLB Conference to Be Held in California

Len Wilcox California Corner, HLB Management

The sixth International Research Conference on Huanglongbing (IRCHLB VI) will be held in California. The conference has been scheduled for March 12-16, 2019, at the Riverside Convention Center in Riverside. This is the first time the conference will be held in California. Sponsored by the California Citrus Research Board (CRB) with the support of California’s citrus industry partners, the gathering …

California Watershed Order Revised

Len Wilcox California Corner

The California State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) recently adopted significant revisions to the Eastern San Joaquin River Watershed Agricultural Order. The order will impact all irrigated regulatory programs statewide, including those that do not currently operate with a coalition system as in the Central Valley. Two years ago, the SWRCB released the first draft of revisions to the order …

California Amends HLB Quarantine Zones

Len Wilcox California Corner, HLB Management

  On Jan. 1, 2018, the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) implemented an emergency regional quarantine to more effectively protect California citrus from huanglongbing (HLB) disease. The quarantine created seven zones: 1) counties where HLB has not been detected and are not next to citrus-producing counties or the Mexican border; 2, 3 and 4) counties widely infested with ACP …

California Citrus Mutual Opposes Water Board Proposal

Len Wilcox California Corner, Water

California Citrus Mutual (CCM) joined with several other associations to oppose major changes proposed by the State Water Resources Control Board set to be adopted for the East San Joaquin Water Quality Coalition. The affected agricultural community and water quality coalitions expect the board to adopt the proposed revisions without substantial modifications at its Jan. 23 meeting. CCM and other …

Specialty Crop Grower Sees Success with Finger Limes

Tacy Callies California Corner

By Len Wilcox When Jim Shanley retired from his highly successful career in commodity trading, he knew what he wanted to do and where he wanted to do it: farm specialty crops in the hills overlooking Morro Bay, California. His choice of crops, however, was not so clear. He started with avocados, but it was a curious little fruit from …

citrus greening

California Ag Chief Prepared to Battle HLB

Len Wilcox California Corner, HLB Management

In an interview at the Citrus Research Board’s (CRB) annual conference last month, Karen Ross, secretary of the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA), said the present status of huanglongbing (HLB) disease is similar to another disease that challenged the California citrus industry years ago. Pierce’s disease was a potentially devastating threat long before HLB. “One of the things …

Freeze Alerts by Phone for California Citrus Growers

Len Wilcox California Corner, Weather

Freeze alerts by phone will be available this winter for California citrus growers. California Citrus Mutual (CCM) is implementing a new system to help Central Valley growers stay updated on freeze alerts. Growers can sign up for text notifications to be alerted when the CCM Central Valley Weather Watch forecast is updated. This will include updates during critical nights. To …

California Agencies Moving to Further Restrict Chlorpyrifos

Len Wilcox California Corner, Regulation

Chlorpyrifos is being targeted again by environmental agencies. According to a press release from California Citrus Mutual (CCM), the California Environmental Protection Agency announced in mid-August that both California Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) and the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment are pursuing new restrictions on chlorpyrifos. CCM says that chlorpyrifos is one of the most important and widely …

Ventura County Growers Tackle Troubles in Paradise

Tacy Callies California Corner

By Len Wilcox Ventura County, California, is perhaps the prettiest place in the world to grow lemons. Nestled between the golden slopes of the coast range and the relaxing seaside and azure-blue ocean, it is just north of Los Angeles on the famous Pacific Coast Highway. In town, Ventura seems far too urban to be an agricultural center; it is …

California Navel Crop Declines Again

Len Wilcox California Corner, Crop Forecast

In a press release dated September 14, California Citrus Mutual (CCM) announced that the state’s current navel orange crop is down about 7 million cartons. This is approximately 10 percent of total production and is the second year in a row crop production has fallen. The 2017-18 California Navel Orange Objective Measurement Survey released on September 12 forecasts the 2017-18 …

Argentinian Lemon Import Lawsuit Update

Len Wilcox California Corner, lemons

Last month, the U.S. Department of Justice asked for dismissal of the lawsuit by California lemon growers challenging a new import rule allowing Argentinian lemons into the United States. The U.S. Citrus Science Council (USCSC), representing approximately 750 family citrus farmers, filed the lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) in federal district court in Fresno, California, earlier this …

California Department of Pesticide Regulation to Study Chlorpyrifos

Len Wilcox California Corner, Regulation

A new effort is underway in California to further regulate chlorpyrifos. On August 18, the California Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) issued a directive for interim mitigation measures to address health risks from the pesticide. This action marks the start of a public and scientific review of DPR’s revised draft risk assessment that could lead to increased restrictions statewide. At …

CUPS Test to Begin at California Research Center

Len Wilcox California Corner

University of California (UC) scientists at the Lindcove Research and Extension Center (LREC) will soon begin to test the effect of growing citrus under protective screen (CUPS). CUPS is a proposed new method of controlling huanglongbing (HLB), or citrus greening disease, by keeping psyllids, small insects known to spread the disease, away from the trees. The test will evaluate the …

Seniors May Reduce Dementia Risk with Citrus

Len Wilcox California Corner, Nutrition

Eat citrus to prevent dementia? A new study published in the British Journal of Nutrition suggests just that. It shows that older people who frequently eat citrus fruit were 23 percent less likely to get dementia. The study was also reported by the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) on its Brain Health and Wellness website. The study was conducted on more than …

citrus greening

HLB Found in California Citrus Birthplace

Abbey Taylor California Corner, Citrus Greening

A citrus tree in the city of Riverside tested positive for huanglongbing (HLB) disease. The detection is the first case of HLB found in a major citrus-producing county and the most northern in California. The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) confirmed the detection of HLB disease in a sample taken from a grapefruit tree located in a Riverside …

citrus greening

UC Puts HLB Research Online in Easy-To-Read Updates

Len Wilcox California Corner

California citrus farmers have their ears perked for all news related to Asian citrus psyllid (ACP), huanglongbing (HLB) disease and HLB research, but some of the very latest advances have been available only in highly technical research journals, often by subscription only. University of California (UC) Cooperative Extension scientists are now translating the research into readable summaries and posting them …

Korea Requirements for Fuller Rose Beetle

Len Wilcox California Corner, Pests

As in previous years, orange shipments to Korea must be free of Fuller rose beetle (FRB) and California red scale (CRS). Growers desiring to qualify oranges for export to South Korea must comply with the FRB protocol during the 2017-2018 shipping season. Growers are required to implement the following measures for FRB control on oranges: 1. Skirt-prune trees to prevent …

Capitol building

California Budget Adds Funds to Fight HLB

Len Wilcox California Corner, Legislative

California is adding funds to help the fight against HLB. Governor Brown signed the 2017 Budget Act this week, which authorizes $10 million to fight the spread of the invasive Asian citrus psyllid (ACP) insect and the deadly and incurable plant disease it can carry, huanglongbing (HLB). “California Citrus Mutual applauds Governor Brown and members of the California Legislature for …