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Coronavirus Food Assistance Program Round II Begins Sept. 21 (What’s Included)

President Donald J. Trump and U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today announced up to an additional $14 billion for agricultural producers who continue to face market disruptions and associated costs because of COVID-19. Signup for the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP 2) will begin September 21 and run through December 11, 2020. “America’s agriculture communities are resilient, but still …

Plant, Insect Viruses Work Together to Spread Disease

In what may be a first for science, researchers with the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) have found an example of plant and insect viruses working together to increase their spread. Michelle Heck, an ARS research molecular biologist, was leading research into poleroviruses, a type of plant virus spread by aphids, when she and Cornell University graduate students Jenny Wilson and …

Chile Continues Ramping Up Stone Fruit Production & Market Share

For marketing year (MY) 2020/21, due to favorable climatic conditions and increasing planted area, Post estimates a 12.1 percent cherry production increase over MY2019/20, totaling 286,000 metric tons (MT), and 13 percent increase in exports reaching 259,000 MT. For MY2020/21, Post projects fresh peaches and nectarines production will reach 169,000 MT while exports will reach 106,000 MT, a three percent …

EU Stone Fruit Production & World Market Share Declines

In market year (MY) 2020/21, EU production of peaches and nectarines may decline 15 percent to 3.4 million metric tons (MT). The drop is due to unfavorable weather conditions and a continuous decrease in total European Union (EU) planted area in response to low profits. Similarly, EU cherry production is projected to lower almost five percent compared to last season …

USDA Assists Farmers, Ranchers & Communities Affected by Western Wildfires

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced the availability of assistance for residents and agricultural producers affected by recent wildfires. As of today, wildfires have burned nearly 6.9 million acres across 11 states. More than 31,000 personnel from the local, state and federal levels are working to contain 61 large fires. The USDA Forest Service has more than 7,800 …

Opportunities for US Cherries in Japan (Door Still Closed for Peaches)

Japan’s MY 2020/21 cherry production rebounds, while unfavorable weather conditions reduce peach harvest. U.S. sweet cherry exports to Japan are expected to increase as Japan lowers tariffs under the U.S.-Japan Trade Agreement. COVID-19 travel restrictions diversify stone fruit distribution channels, while demand remains steady.  Cherries: Crop Area Japan’s crop area for cherries continues a steady gradual decline due to aging …

CDFA Environmental Farming Program Saves Water & Energy

Recent heat waves have caused California’s energy grid to take a beating, which forced the California Independent System Operator, the entity that operates the state’s power grid, to institute rolling blackouts. How do California’s farmers and ranchers deal with energy uncertainty during times like this, when the intense heat demands an increase in irrigation? For many years, they have been working …

False Chinch Bug in New Avocado Plantings

The false chinch bug (FCB), Nysius raphanus (Hemiptera: Lygaeidae), is a pest of many plants. FCB is a generalist and has been found to be a problem in many cropping systems such as soybeans, quinoa, tobacco, cotton, broccoli and other Brassicaceae plants. FCB adults (above) is mostly light to dark gray, elongate, and about 0.12 inch (3 mm) long. Females lay eggs on host …

US Increases Market Share of Stone Fruit Exports in Taiwan

In 2019, U.S. peach, nectarine, and cherry exports to Taiwan increased as competitor market share declined. Taiwan’s peach and nectarine production is forecast to increase from 16,171 metric tons (MT) in 2019 to 19,000 MT in 2020 due to improved bearing. Taiwan’s robust handling of COVID-19 has led to a modest recovery in domestic consumption, which has allowed consumption to …

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