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PMA Launches the Essentials of Produce Safety — Online Professional Training Program

The Produce Marketing Association (PMA) has announced the launch of its eLearning certificate course Essentials of Produce Safety, an entirely online, affordable and in-depth program covering the key challenges and best practices in produce safety. The course is the first certificate program in PMA’s new educational platform offering, FreshEd Academy. The course was developed in partnership with Intertek Alchemy, the …

CA Prune Board Authorized to Continue for Another Five Years

Following a successful public hearing, the California Prune Board (CPB) has been authorized by the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) to continue for another five years through July 31, 2025 – without the need for an industry referendum. At the hearing, prune growers and processors voiced unanimous support for the CPB, along with sharing numerous examples of the …

US Sweet Cherry Production Down 6 Percent (California Increases)

United States sweet cherry total production for 2020 is forecast at 334,000 tons, down 6 percent from 2019. In California, growers reported sufficient chill, despite an unusually warm winter. Cool weather in March extended the fruit growing season, which led to increased expected yields compared with the previous season. In Oregon and Washington, severe cold snaps in February and mid-March …

Study Finds 82 Percent of Avocado Oil Rancid or Mixed With Other Oils

Consumer demand is rising for all things avocado, including oil made from the fruit. Avocado oil is a great source of vitamins, minerals and the type of fats associated with reducing the risk of heart disease, stroke and diabetes. But according to new research from food science experts at the University of California, Davis, the vast majority of avocado oil …

Covid-19, Climate, Challenge and Change

The global pandemic has revealed in new ways how essential farmers and farmworkers are to the food supply chain. With this revelation has also come more widespread understanding of the challenges farmers and ranchers face while scrambling to adopt new workplace safety protocols in the fields and on packing lines, respond to dramatically altered markets, and seek relief funding so …

Bringing the Next Generation of Avocados to Market

UC Riverside has entered into a $2.25 million partnership with Spain-based Eurosemillas S.A., a global leader in the commercialization of agriculture innovations, to help the university bring to market the most promising and advanced avocado scions and rootstocks in its collection. If successful, these varieties would meet diverse regional growing requirements, exhibit better post-harvest characteristics, increase yields, provide resistance against …

USDA Issues First Coronavirus Food Assistance Program Payments

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today announced the USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) has already approved more than $545 million in payments to producers who have applied for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program. FSA began taking applications May 26, and the agency has received over 86,000 applications for this important relief program. “The coronavirus has hurt America’s farmers, ranchers, …

CA Farmers Can Now Apply for Financial Assistance through Coronavirus Food Assistance Program

Agricultural producers can now apply for USDA’s Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP), which provides direct payments to offset impacts from the coronavirus pandemic. The application and a payment calculator are now available online, and USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) staff members are available via phone, fax and online tools to help producers complete applications. The agency set up a call …

Philippine Market Opens to US Fresh Blueberries

On May 24, 2020, the Philippines will formally open its market to U.S. fresh highbush blueberries. Since the United States is the only country with official access to the Philippine market, U.S. suppliers are poised to take advantage of the opportunity to supply the Philippine retail and food service sectors. Traders estimate sales of U.S. fresh blueberries could reach $500,000 …

USDA Announces Details of Direct Assistance to Farmers

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today announced details of the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP), which will provide up to $16 billion in direct payments to deliver relief to America’s farmers and ranchers impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. In addition to this direct support to farmers and ranchers, USDA’s Farmers to Families Food Box program is partnering with regional and local …

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