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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, …

Watermelon Board Pivots Nutrition Education Strategy to Digital Model

The National Watermelon Promotion Board (NWPB) is realigning resources to adapt to a new climate while focusing on summer sales. Unlike years past when summer months meant in-person events, the socially-distanced approach adjusts marketing and promotional efforts to continue to position watermelon as the go-to choice for kids and families. NWPB has been partnered with the world’s only rock & …

12 Million Ton Processing Tomato Crop Anticipated in California

As of May 15, California’s tomato processors reported they have or will have contracts for 12.0 million tons of processing tomatoes for 2020. This production estimate is unchanged from the January intentions forecast and 7.8 percent above the final 2019 contracted production total. The May contracted acreage of 235,000 is also unchanged from the January intentions forecast and 1,000 acres …

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 …

Connecting the Watermelon Industry with Retail and Foodservice Buyers

The new National Watermelon Promotion Board (NWPB) Watermelon Supplier Database is the perfect platform to connect retail and foodservice buyers with suppliers as the summer season takes off for America’s favorite melon. Each year the NWPB staff promote watermelon to retail and foodservice audiences, both in-person and digitally. When a contact asks where they can get watermelon, this new database …

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 …

LGMA Partners with Western Growers to Offer Remote Food Safety Audits During Pandemic

Mandatory government food safety audits of leafy greens farms under the California Leafy Greens Marketing Agreement are continuing during the COVID-19 pandemic. Announced today by Western Growers (WG) and the California Leafy Greens Marketing Agreement (CA LGMA), is the availability of a new process developed through a collaboration with iFoodDecisionSciences (iFoodDS), that streamlines all verification documents and data for online …

When to Incorporate Wild Nature & the Bigger Picture of Healthy People/Ecosystems

Guiding Principles At the heart of our work, we believe that farming within natural systems nurtures healthy people and flourishing ecosystems. Farming is dependent on ecological interactions among many kinds of species. Farms can be safer and more resilient because diversity encourages a wide array of beneficial organisms and processes. Farms are more cost effective with reduced outside inputs, and …

COVID-19 Impacts on Food Supply Chain (May 12 Zoom Call)

Why is milk being dumped and produce left to rot in fields while grocery store shelves go empty during the COVID-19 pandemic? Why are grocery stores running out of meat, and eggs becoming so expensive? The head of California’s Department of Food and Agriculture, researchers from the University of California, Davis, and food purveyors will tackle these and other questions …

California Strawberry Growers & Farm Workers Pick Safety

Pick Safety is a new effort from the California Strawberry Commission to highlight farm worker safety and industry-leading training and safety practices by emphasizing that everybody is responsible to always pick safety. “Our new I Pick Safety logo reminds people to be safe and healthy, and it highlights why this is important,” said Carolyn O’Donnell, communications director of the Commission. …

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