APHIS Protects Domestic Fruit Production, Deregulates Tomato Brown Rugose Fruit Virus in Fruit for Consumption
Speciality Crop Grower
by Clint Thompson
3d ago
WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is updating and issuing a Federal Order designed to continue protecting the domestic pepper and tomato industries while safely deregulating tomato brown rugose fruit virus (ToBRFV)-positive tomatoes and peppers for consumption. Under the new Federal Order, APHIS will maintain its strong safeguards for imported and domestic tomato and pepper plant propagative materials, including seed, to ensure domestic fruit growers continue to be protected against ToBRFV. However, by deregulating ..read more
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South Georgia Watermelon Harvests Underway
Speciality Crop Grower
by Clint Thompson
4d ago
Photo by Clint Thompson/Shows watermelons being harvested in a field in Tift County. By Clint Thompson Watermelon harvests are underway across South Georgia. One crop scout attributes an uptick in disease pressure in watermelons this year to the increased rainfall experienced throughout the region in the spring. Photo by Clint Thompson/Shows watermelons being harvested in a field in Tift County. Tim Flanders, who scouts watermelon fields in the Tifton, Georgia, area, also said producers experienced some diseases sooner in the production season than normal. “We’ve got several issues around, and ..read more
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GFVGA Lawsuit: We’ve Got to Do Everything We Can to Protect Labor For Future
Speciality Crop Grower
by Clint Thompson
4d ago
By Clint Thompson The current lawsuit against the Department of Labor (DOL) is a last resort for Georgia Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association (GFVGA), a plaintiff in a case that is challenging new worker rules proposed for the H-2A program. Chris Butts, executive director of the GFVGA, explains his organization’s position in joining a lawsuit against the DOL. This is as much a protection for Georgia producers’ future as it is for what is happening in the present. “As the H-2A program continues to grow and Georgia growers continue to utilize it more in spite of the fact that it’s become so ..read more
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Fusarium Wilt Management: Grafting, Right Cultivar More Important Than Fungicides
Speciality Crop Grower
by Clint Thompson
4d ago
Photo courtesy of Bhabesh Dutta/Shows fusarium wilt in watermelon. Research has shown that grafting or choosing the right watermelon cultivar is more important than fungicide applications in managing fusarium wilt, according to one Clemson scientist. Plant pathologist Tony Keinath reported in his experiment at the Coastal Research and Education Center in Charleston, South Carolina, Cracker Jack had more diseased plants (5.8%) than Fascination (0.2%). Twelve of the 13 diseased plants were in Cracker Jack plots, due to it being susceptible to races 1 and 2 of Fusarium, while Fascination is resis ..read more
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Warm Waters: Current Ocean Temps Closer to What’s Seen in August
Speciality Crop Grower
by Dan Cooper
4d ago
By leolintang/DepositPhotos image The long-range weather forecasts call for an extremely active tropical season. Much of that potential for increased activity this summer is due to warmer-than-normal water temperatures, says Pam Knox, University of Georgia (UGA) Extension agricultural climatologist. “If you look at the longer range (forecast), we do see a pattern shift that is going to allow more likely (storm) development, probably in the Gulf of Mexico. From there, the Gulf is very warm. The waters are really at temperatures closer to what we expect to see in August than what we see in early ..read more
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AFVGA Executive Director Discusses Current Season
Speciality Crop Grower
by Clint Thompson
4d ago
By Clint Thompson Fruit and vegetable season is wide open across Alabama. Crops are being harvested and sold in counties all over the state. Photo courtesy of Jackson Reeves/Shows peaches growing in Alabama. Blake Thaxton, executive director of the Alabama Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association (AFVGA), discussed the current situation facing his state’s specialty crop producers. “It’s wide-open peach season. The peach crop seems to be doing well, definitely better than the last couple of years. We’re very optimistic about it. I’ve gotten to taste test a few myself, and man they are good. Ther ..read more
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USDA Awards $50 Million to Support Farmworkers and Agricultural Employers
Speciality Crop Grower
by Clint Thompson
4d ago
PALISADE, Colo. – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced last week that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is awarding $50 million to 141 awardees in 40 states and Puerto Rico, through the Farm Labor Stabilization and Protection Pilot Program (FLSP Program), reaching 177 unique agricultural operations and more than 11,000 workers. The awards will help improve the resiliency of the U.S. food supply chain by addressing agriculture labor challenges and instability, strengthen protections for farmworkers, and expand legal pathways for labor migration.  “These awards will largely suppo ..read more
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Snail’s Pace: Impact Being Seen in Georgia Vegetables
Speciality Crop Grower
by Clint Thompson
4d ago
By Clint Thompson Snails are already impacting citrus in Florida. Georgia vegetables experts are concerned their crops could be next. Photo courtesy of Lauren Diepenbrock/Shows snails clogging irrigation in citrus. Stormy Sparks, University of Georgia (UGA) Cooperative Extension vegetable entomologist, talked about the dangers that snails pose to all vegetable crops in South Georgia. “It’s a growing concern, absolutely,” Sparks said. “We’ve got some in the squash fields over in Colquitt County, and it’s a different species. It’s not the invasive species they’ve been dealing with in Florida. Fl ..read more
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From Hops to Pellets: UF/IFAS Scientists Meeting Craft Brewer Demand
Speciality Crop Grower
by Clint Thompson
4d ago
Photo courtesy of UF/IFAS Many craft brewers prefer to make their product using hops pellets because of several advantages they provide over whole cone hops. To address a request by Tampa Bay-area craft brewers, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) researchers are converting the crop they grow into pellets. By Brad Buck, UF/IFAS. “Brewers use several forms of hops to make beer, including pellets, fresh whole cones, dried whole cones and oil extracts,” said Shinsuke Agehara, a UF/IFAS associate professor of horticultural sciences. “Each of them offers dist ..read more
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Georgia Department of Agriculture Issues Stop Sale Order on Midash Forte Insecticide
Speciality Crop Grower
by Clint Thompson
4d ago
Tyler Harper Atlanta, Ga – Georgia Agriculture Commissioner Tyler Harper announced on Tuesday that the Georgia Department of Agriculture Agricultural Inputs Division has issued a “Stop Sale” Order on Midash Forte Insecticide (EPA Reg. No.83529-6) manufactured for Sharda USA, LLC. Lab test results indicate Batch TX433 is contaminated with herbicides and could potentially cause crop damage. Midash Forte is a commonly used insecticide, and the department encourages farmers to check their supply and discontinue the use of Midash Forte Insecticide Batch TX433. The Georgia Department of Agriculture ..read more
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