Thoughts on this Historic Drought: Seeking Clarity

Orchards irrigated with high pH ground water during the 2014 growing season are showing the effects on their current growth and development.

Orchards irrigated with high pH ground water during the 2014 growing season are showing the effects on their current growth and development.

The drought that farmers have been responding to for some time has finally captured the attention of the general public, due in large part to the Governor’s recent announcement of mandatory cuts in water usage in urban and suburban parts of the state. The most common question from people who aren’t involved in agriculture seems to be, “Why aren’t farmers being asked to make cuts too?” The answer is, we started making cuts four years ago, when the drought began, and we haven’t stopped since.

In times of crisis people have a tendency to focus on blame. But our first obligation is to understand the actual problem. Instead of turning on each other, we need to turn toward the drought and fight it together. Blue Diamond Growers will continue to collaborate with growers, experts, and policy makers to be a part of the solution – as we have been doing for some time.

No doubt the water crisis will be an ongoing topic on this blog and I’ll have more to say about specifics as time goes on. For now, it’s clear that we need to make sure the basic facts are understood. Toward that end, I encourage you to visit:

Almond Hullers & Processors Association: 8 Facts About Almonds, Agriculture and the Drought

AgAlert: Get ready to engage in an intense water debate

California Farm Water Coalition

 

*As expected, industry shipments are up due to clean up at West Coast Ports. Expect more information as market reaction comes in.