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San Luis Obispo County Agriculture News

April 15, 2022


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SLO County Issues New Restrictions on New Irrigation Well Construction in Response to Governor's Executive Order

If you need to put in a new agriculture irrigation well in San Luis Obispo County, you may be out of luck, especially if you are in parts of the Paso Robles, Cuyama, or San Luis Valley (Edna) groundwater basins. In addition to restrictions in those areas, ALL new or expanded agriculture irrigation well construction in SLO County will now be subject to an additional “hydrogeological report” requirement. 

On April 15, SLO County Groundwater Sustainability Director Blaine Reely gave an update to Farm Bureau about the County’s new policy for issuing permits for new irrigation wells based on Governor Newsom’s Executive Order on March 28. The County’s new policy is included in a document “NEW PROCEDURES IMPLEMENTING REQUIREMENTS UNDER EXECUTIVE ORDER N-7-22."  You can review the Governor’s March 28 Executive Order here, but the applicable parts to agriculture irrigation wells are:

  • “To protect health, safety, and the environment during this drought emergency, a county, city, or other public agency shall not: 
  • a. Approve a permit for a new groundwater well or for alteration of an existing well in a basin subject to the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act and classified as medium- or high-priority without first obtaining written verification from a Groundwater Sustainability Agency managing the basin or area of the basin where the well is proposed to be located that groundwater extraction by the proposed well would not be inconsistent with any sustainable groundwater management program established in any applicable Groundwater Sustainability Plan adopted by that Groundwater Sustainability Agency and would not decrease the likelihood of achieving a sustainability goal for the basin covered by such a plan; or 
  • b. Issue a permit for a new groundwater well or for alteration of an existing well without first determining that extraction of groundwater from the proposed well is (1) not likely to interfere with the production and functioning of existing nearby wells, and (2) not likely to cause subsidence that would adversely impact or damage nearby infrastructure. This paragraph shall not apply to permits for wells that will provide less than two acre-feet per year of groundwater for individual domestic users, or that will exclusively provide groundwater to public water supply systems as defined in section 116275 of the Health and Safety Code.”

The Governor’s Order exempts “wells that will provide less than two (2) acre-feet per year of groundwater for individual domestic users or that will exclusively provide groundwater to public water supply systems.” All other types of wells, like a well used for agricultural irrigation, is considered “non-exempt.”

What Does The New SLO County Policy Mean?

The County already had authority to review all water well construction permit applications through the Environmental Health Services Department. That part has not changed. 

  1. The Governor’s Order now gives the County an additional approval authority (acting as a Groundwater Sustainability Agency overseeing parts of local groundwater basins) to approve or deny new irrigation wells in certain parts of the county in High Priority basins that are in overdraft (parts of the Paso, Cuyama and Edna Valley groundwater basins). The County has indicated it will not be approving any new or expanded irrigation wells in these High Priority basin areas.
  2. The County will now require anyone seeking a permit for a new or expanded irrigation well (non-exempt wells) in ANY part of the County to hire a “California-licensed Professional Geologist with a Certified Hydrogeologist specialty certification” to prepare a report certifying that the proposed new well: (1) “is not likely to interfere with the production and functioning of existing nearby wells” and  (2) “is not likely to cause subsidence that would adversely impact or damage nearby infrastructure.” 

This hydrogeologist report is expected to cost at least $2,500 to perform. The definition of “existing nearby wells” is not defined with a specific distance, and it could even apply to a farmer’s own nearby wells on their property. SLO County has not seen substantial subsidence due to groundwater pumping, so this component may not be a significant factor. 

The County of San Luis Obispo is the largest Groundwater Sustainability Agency (GSA) in the County, but not the only one. Each GSA will have its own process for reviewing permit applications for new irrigation wells. These new rules will be in place until the Governor’s Executive Order is rescinded, which could be months or years; no one knows. 

For general information on water well construction from the County of San Luis Obispo Environmental Health Services click here. For general information on SLO county Groundwater Basins from the County of San Luis Obispo Public Works click here.

This Week In SLO County Agriculture

In This Week's Issue:

  • Community: Funds Still Available for SLO County Air Pollution Control District's Carl Moyer-AB617-FARMER Grant Program;
  • County Government: SLO Tribune - Are You Ready For The Primary? Here's Where To Catch All The Candidate Debates in SLO County;
  • State Government: Have You Experienced Illegal Dumping On Your Ranch? Farm Bureau Needs To Hear From You;
  • Federal Government: California Farm Bureau Federal Policy News for April 14;
  • Business Member Spotlight: PG&E;
  • Featured Member Benefit: Caterpillar Equipment Discount;
  • Produce: Although Impact Is Diminished, "Dirty Dozen" List Must Still Be Abandoned;
  • Labor: Santa Maria Times - Field Workers From Acquistapace Farms Go On Strike, Seek Better Wages;
  • Environmental: SLO County Farmers- Learn More About Carbon Sequestration Markets Through Weekly Webinars;
  • USDA & CDFA: Tax Resources Available For Farmers & Ranchers;
  • Vineyard & Wine: Templeton's Heinzen Named Farm Manager Of The Year;
  • Research: Cal Poly Awarded California 100 Grant For Agricultural Research; and
  • Water: SLO Tribune - San Luis Obispo Groundwater Pumped Beyond Sustainable Levels, New Report Shows

April 8 Most-Read

1. Paso Robles groundwater pumped far beyond sustainable levels, new report shows

2. Job Opening at Coastal San Luis Resource Conservation District for Executive Director

3. KSBY News - Heat wave jumpstarts growth at central coast wineries

4. Animal Rights Activist Glues Hand To Table During Legislative Hearing At California State Capitol

5. Wind-blown fire at Nipomo strawberry field burns shop, shed and farm equipment

6. FARM TEAM ALERT: California Wants to End Animal Feeding Operations

7. April 19 Webinar: How to Shop When You’ve Been Dropped (Buying Home Insurance in Crisis Conditions)

8. California takes step toward first offshore wind farm on West Coast

9. The Packer: Western drought puts food security at risk

10. April 25 Adelaida Area Hydrogeologic Study Community Meeting

Executive Director Report

Here are a few things we worked on this week:

  • Met with staff from Hipcamp to discuss the status of the County's development of a Private Land Camping Ordinance;
  • Met with State Assembly candidate Dawn Addis;
  • Spoke to Cal Poly agriculture students in Dr. Scott Vernon's Ag Issues and Ag Leadership classes;
  • Assisted with gathering signatures for the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association-led referendum to Repeal the Death Tax;
  • Reviewed the April 19 SLO County Board of Supervisors meeting agenda;
  • Finalized dates for SLO County Farm Bureau's Candidate Forums (details next week);
  • Chaired the SLO Chamber of Commerce Legislative Action Committee; and
  • Gave our Farm Bureau weekly update on 98.1 KJUG The Tom & Becky Show (every Thursday around 9:05am).

Upcoming Events:

  • April 19 - Free Webinar: How To Shop (For Property Insurance) When You've Been Dropped
  • April 19 at 6pm at Ancient Peaks Winery – California Women for Agriculture SLO County Chapter and Farm Bureau Legislative Meeting with Guest Speaker Supervisor Debbie Arnold
  • April 26 at 5pm – SLO County Farm Bureau monthly board meeting (all members welcome, please RSVP to info@slofarmbureau.org)

Community: Funds Still Available for SLO County Air Pollution Control District's Carl Moyer-AB617-FARMER Grant Program

Now Accepting Applications for SLO County Agricultural Tractor & Engine Grants from APCD

SLO County Air Pollution Control District (APCD) helps local farmers and businesses fund replacement tractors, equipment and engines and scrap out their old equipment. APCD staff reported to SLO County Farm Bureau this week they still have funds available and are looking for applications.

The APCD’s Carl Moyer / AB617 and FARMER Incentive Programs provides funding to help pay for projects that reduce heavy-duty diesel engine emissions prior to any regulatory requirement. Applicants may qualify for grants totaling up to $300,000 (applicants can only have $300,000 in active grants at one time- including historical active grants), subject to cost effectiveness limits and other requirements of the program. Learn more here or download the flyer here.

For more information, contact Meghan Field, APCD Public Information Officer & Air Quality Specialist at 805-781-1003 or mfield@co.slo.ca.us Your local equipment dealer can also assist you with this process. Contact Farm Bureau members: C&N Tractors, Coastal Tractor ,Cal-Coast Machinery, and Tan Oak Tractor Sales.

As we look to 2023 harvest, G3 would like to share our Ag Hauling internship opportunities with the local agriculture community. This is a great internship program to gain ag and logistics experience and could turn into a full time job later as many of our previous interns have become full time employees!

  • Download the flyer
  • Apply online (look for Harvest Ag Seasonal) or
  • Reach out to Simon Roth with your resume: Simon.Roth@G3Enterprises.com
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SLO County California Women for Agriculture, together with SLO County Farm Bureau's Young Farmers and Ranchers, are excited to invite you to attend our April Legislative Meeting to hear Supervisor Debbie Arnold provide updates on local government issues. Everyone is welcome - bring a friend and let's have a great time! 

We would also like to extend a huge thank you to Ancient Peaks Winery for hosting our group, and for their continued support of agriculture!

April 19 at 6pm at Ancient Peaks Winery in Santa Margarita, no cost to attend. Casual dress, come as you are!

International Forum of Agricultural Robotics (FIRA) - Oct. 18-20 in Fresno


The unique 3-day event for autonomous farming and agricultural robotics solutions,A networking time for farmers, robot manufacturers, industrials and scientists,In-field demos, business time and research projects presentations.

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SLO County Food System Coalition Meets May 10th at Farm Bureau

Food System Coalition - 2022 Q2 Meeting will be May 10, 2022 from 9am-10:30am at SLO County Farm Bureau (also virtual option). Panelists will discuss "Food Equity, Health & Food Access in SLO County Revisited"

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County Government: SLO Tribune - Are You Ready For The Primary? Here's Where To Catch All The Candidate Debates in SLO County


SLO County Board of Supervisors Meet April 19

SLO County Board of Supervisors will meet April 19. Agenda details can be found here and watch the meeting here.

  • Item 14 - Request to 1) direct the Auditor-Controller to issue the settlement payment of $200,000 to legal counsel for California Water Impact Network (CWIN) pursuant to the terms of the settlement agreement once all parties have executed the settlement agreement and all Real Parties in Interest (Real Parties) have remitted payment to the Auditor-Controller and 2) approve a corresponding budget adjustment request (BAR) using General Fund Contingencies to increase appropriations in Fund Center 16002-Environmental Health in the amount of $200,000 to satisfy the settlement reached with CWIN and Real Parties, by 4/5 vote. All districts.
  • Item 16 - Submittal of resolutions approving two new Land Conservation Contracts: 1) Wicks-Wiebe (CON2020-00024) - 2770 Gillis Canyon Road, approximately 3.5 miles southeast of Shandon in the Shandon-Carrizo Sub-area of the North County Planning Area; and 2) Wiebe (CON2020-00025) - 2770 Gillis Canyon Road, approximately 3.5 miles southeast of Shandon in the Shandon-Carrizo Sub-area of the North County Planning Area; exempt from CEQA. District 1.
  • Item 19 - Submittal of a resolution amending the Position Allocation List (PAL) for Fund Center 405-Public Works, by deleting 1.00 FTE Program Manager I/II - Limited Term and adding 1.00 FTE Program Manager I/II. All Districts. (Editor note: This item includes part of staffing for Paso Basin Planting Ordinance development)
  • Item 24 - Submittal of a resolution recognizing May as “CalFresh Awareness Month” in San Luis Obispo County. All Districts.
  • Item 33- Hearing to consider adoption of a resolution amending the Rules of Procedure to Implement the Land Conservation Act of 1965 (Williamson Act) to streamline the application process for agricultural preserves and land conservation contracts to 1) no longer require Planning Commission review of agricultural preserve applications and 2) require lienholders to sign application acknowledgements instead of recorded land conservation contracts (LRP2021-00007). All Districts.

Are you ready for the primary? Here's where to catch all the candidate debates in SLO County

San Luis Obispo County is about two months away from the next election, and candidates are gearing up to try to win your votes in a slew of debates ahead of the primary. Nine candidates are fighting for three SLO County Board of Supervisors seats up for election June 7,and a number of Central Coast candidates are running for seats in state Legislature.

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Editor's note: SLO County Farm Bureau will announce our candidate forum dates next week.

SLO County Weed Management Area - Quarterly Newsletter for April 2022

State Government: Have You Experienced Illegal Dumping On Your Ranch? Farm Bureau Needs To Hear From You

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Have You Experienced Illegal Dumping On Your Ranch?

California Farm Bureau is pushing a bill (AB 2613) to help mitigate illegal dumping on rural lands by allowing impacted farmers and ranchers direct access to funding from the Cal Recycle program. Currently, only public entities can receive money for such programs. This bill would require the Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery to establish a pilot project within the program, until January 1, 2028, that would make grants available only to farmers and ranchers and for the purposes of the farm and ranch solid waste cleanup and abatement grant program.

We need feedback from anyone who has experienced illegal dumping or participated in the Cal Recycle program. Your input is critical for this legislation. Please email feedback to bburchett@slofarmbureau.org or call the SLO County Farm Bureau office at 805-543-3654.

California Farm Bureau's Friday Review for April 15, 2022 - Governmental & Legislative Affairs Update

California's shrinking population has big impacts

Although California's population growth began to slow in the 1990s after exploding in the previous decade by 6 million people, both official and independent demographers continued to see relatively strong growth for decades to come. In 2007, then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's in-house demographers projected that California would have 39.9 million residents by 2011.

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Federal Government: California Farm Bureau Federal Policy News For April 14

Federal Policy News - April 14

  • USDA Announces Additional Details on 10-Year Wildfire Strategy, Announces Funding
  • Interior Releases 5-Year Plan to Address Wildfire Risk
  • Additional ELAP Assistance for Drought-Stricken Ranchers Announced
  • This Cheeseburger Explains Your Grocery Bill
  •  EPA Releases Nutrient Framework Memorandum
  •  CAFB Conducts Ag Labor Survey with UC Davis & ASU

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Opinion: Protectionist policies are costing America's farmers

The uncertainty facing farmers has skyrocketed in the past year. A combination of the COVID-19 pandemic, supply chain, as well as labor issues, and the highest inflation rate in more than 40 years with no clear end date or solution in sight is cause for extreme concern within the agricultural community.

One of the biggest threats is rising fertilizer costs and the fact that available supply does not match demand here in the U.S. According to a recent Texas A&M University Agricultural and Food Policy Center (AFPC) report, fertilizer prices are already up as much as 200% year-over-year and expected to continue to increase for the 2022 planting season. ...

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Business Member Spotlight:


Maximize your savings with time-of-use rates

Time-of-use rate plans can help you save money because they offer lower energy rates when energy demand is low. More here.

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Pacific Gas and Electric Company - Virtual Safety Town Hall

You are invited to join us for an interactive virtual safety town hall where we will discuss our 2022 wildfire safety efforts. Participants will have the opportunity to ask questions and share feedback with the PG&E team including one of our Vice Presidents.

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Thank You Farm Bureau Members

Renewing Members

Dale Evenson, Tobias Wheeler, Stephen Martin, Hawks Hill Ranch, Susan Warren, Todd Rinkenberger, Charles Whitney, Frederick Hoey, Westside Vineyard, Jaleah Brynn, Electricraft Inc, Gary Rodgers 

SLO County Farm Bureau Business Support Member List

Featured Member Benefit:

Caterpillar Discount

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Produce: Although Impact Is Diminished, "Dirty Dozen" List Must Still Be Abandoned

Although Impact Is Diminished, "Dirty Dozen" List Must Still Be Abandoned

While the "dirty dozen" list impact has significantly diminished as more reporters and media outlets recognize it lacks scientific credibility and negatively impacts produce consumption, for the benefit of consumers, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) must ...

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US Strawberry Demand Moving in the Ripe Direction

The US market has absorbed over 2 billion pounds of fresh strawberries recently. Although some consider the market to be mature, strawberry consumption has continued to grow and shows an elevated household penetration in the US. In terms of volume, strawberries will continue to be the leading item in the so-called berry patch in years to come.

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Cal Poly Strawberry Center Annual Field Day 2022 - July 28

Join more than 300 strawberry growers, researchers and industry representatives for this year’s Cal Poly Strawberry Center Field Day held on campus. Participants will rotate through stations, hearing from Cal Poly students and staff about the latest research taking place at the Strawberry Center. Topics range from the newest automation ...

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May 11, 2022 (3 to 4 pm) - Downy mildew of vegetables

In this webinar, Dr. Alexander I. Putman, Assistant Specialist in Cooperative Extension and Assistant Plant Pathologist with the University of California at Riverside, will discuss downy mildew in vegetable crops and management. 1.0 CEU (other) from DPR and 1 CEU (IPM) from CCA are pending. Register here.

July 27, 2022 (3 to 4 pm) - Mealybugs in Citrus

In this webinar, Dr. Sandipa Gautam, University of California Cooperative Extension Area Citrus IPM Advisor at Lindcove Research & Extension Center and Kearney Agricultural Research & Extension Center, will discuss citrus mealybugs in the San Joaquin Valley and how they have become increasingly more concerning over the last 2 to 3 years. Biology, monitoring, and management will be included. 1.0 CEU (other) from DPR and 1 CEU (IPM) from CCA are pending. Register here.

Labor: Santa Maria Times - Field Workers From Acquistapace Farms Go On Strike, Seek Better Wages

For more information on Early Education and Child Care Programs from the Community Action Partnership of SLO County, contact Family Service Advocate at Daisy Linares,

(805) 929-0016 ext. 14 or dlinares@capslo.org

Compliance Resources from California Farm Bureau's Farm Employers Labor Service

April 29, 2022 (webinar): California’s Newest (and Vaguest) Employer Mandate: What Will California Privacy Rights Act Require You to Do to Safeguard Employee’s Data: The CPRA significantly amends the California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 (CCPA) by broadening businesses' obligations under the CCPA and creating the California Privacy Protection Agency, the first statewide privacy regulatory agency, to enforce the CCPA. California employers with more than $25 million in annual gross revenue need to be prepared to comply with the new requirements by January 1, 2023. Seth Mehrten of FELS Group Legal Services Program partner firm Barsamian & Moody explains the new requirements and how to best prepare for compliance in the lead-up to the law's effective date.

April 29, 2022, 10 AM

Register here

May 25, 2022 (webinar): ALRB Do's and Don'ts: An Overview of the Agricultural Labor Relations Act and the Agricultural Labor Relations Board: Rights to protected concerted activity and other rights protected by the Agricultural Labor Relations Act (ALRA) apply to employees even in non-union workplaces. Agricultural Labor Relations Board (ALRB) chair Victoria Hassid will offer insight into the Board's enforcement of these rights.

May 25, 2022, 10 AM

Register here

Field workers from Acquistapace Farms go on strike, seek better wages

Around 50 workers from Acquistapace Farms in Santa Maria walked away from the strawberry fields early Monday morning, beginning a strike for higher wages. The workers marched down Blosser Road near the farm entrance holding signs and chanting, "Si, Se Puede."

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California farmworkers push bill to allow vote-by-mail unionization, worker info disclosure

(The Center Square) - A bill that would allow California farmworkers to vote by mail to unionize will be heard in an Assembly committee later this month. Farmworkers are calling on Gov. Gavin Newsom to sign the bill once it reaches his desk.

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A California Labor Law That Lets Workers Sue On The State's Behalf Faces Its Toughest Test

A pending U.S. Supreme Court ruling could hollow out a California law that lets employees collectively sue their employers over workplace law violations. Thousands of workers have used the law to address workplace issues, ...

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Does Your Business Have 5 or More Employees? Farm Bureau Retirement Plan Webinars April 26, May 20

California’s state retirement plan mandate is currently in effect for employers with 51 employers or more and will expand in June to include those employers with 5 employees or more. Ensure you are prepared to comply with the new California retirement plan mandate. Join us at one of our upcoming webinars to understand what is required under the new mandate and find out which registration deadline applies to you based on your employee count. To register click here.

Employer Alert: Changes to Pandemic-era Allowance of Expired I-9 Verification Documents

March 29, 2022 The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) recently announced that its temporary COVID-19 pandemic policy of allowing employers to accept expired Form I-9 List B documents to verify employment eligibility is finally coming to an end.

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Farm Labor Contractor Exam Preperation

Tuesday, April 19 from 2:00 - 3:00 pm

Free to California Farm Labor Contractors Association, $30 nonmembers. Presentado con interpretación simultánea en español. 

Are you ready for the California FLC licensing exam? With failure rates skyrocketing, ensure you are set up to ace the test and continue to work in compliance! Tune in with an expert who has successfully guided FLCs all across the state through the process. Get insights on how to study efficiently, what types of questions are asked, and tips on how to approach the exam. Register Here

Environmental: SLO County Farmers- Learn More About Carbon Sequestration Markets Through Weekly Webinars

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Feds Prepare for Morro Bay Offshore Wind Energy Area with Request for Public Comments on Draft Environmental Assessment

In line with the Biden administration's focus on expanding offshore wind energy, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) is seeking public review and comments on the draft Morro Bay Wind Energy Area (WEA) environmental assessment (EA) by Friday, May 6, 2022.

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SLO County Farmers: Learn More About Carbon Sequestration Markets Through Weekly Webinars

Register here. Sessions 2, 4 and 5 will be of particular interest to farmers.

  1.  Session 1 - Carbon Markets: The Basics
  2. Session 2 - Carbon Markets: Supply-side Considerations
  3. Session 3 - Carbon Markets: Demand-side Considerations
  4. Session 4 - Beyond Carbon Markets: Holistic and Integrated Projects and Stewardship
  5. Session 5 - Carbon Markets: Bringing it all Together: Interactive project development activity

Livestock: KSBY - Rising Beef Prices Impacting Spending Habits On The Central Coast

NCBA renews call for suspension of Brazilian beef imports

Following the USDA report highlighting an increase in Brazilian beef imports, the National Cattlemen's Beef Association (NCBA) renewed its call for the immediate suspension of fresh beef imports from Brazil. NCBA has repeatedly called for...

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Researchers study if larkspur tolerance is inheritable

Domestic cattle losses in the US due to toxic plants can number up to $50 million per year. Larkspur, a perennial native to the western US, is one of the plants that can be lethal to cattle. Each population of larkspur differs in its toxicity.

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Rising beef prices impacting spending habits on the Central Coast

Food prices are soaring across the board but beef, in particular, is getting much more expensive. The owner of the Arroyo Grande Meat Company tells KSBY that the price of prime rib has gone up $2 per pound in the last month.

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USDA & CDFA: Tax Resources Available For Farmers & Ranchers

CDFA announces vacancies on California Organic Products Advisory Committee

PUBLISHED ON SACRAMENTO - The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) is announcing vacancies on the California Organic Products Advisory Committee (COPAC). COPAC advises the CDFA secretary on matters pertaining to the California State Organic Program (SOP). The SOP is responsible for enforcement of federal and state laws governing...

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San Luis Obispo County Farm Service Agency Monthly Update

Producers in San Luis Obispo County are eligible to apply for 2022 Livestock Forage Disaster Program (LFP) benefits on small grain, native pasture, and improved pasture. LFP provides compensation if you suffer grazing losses for covered livestock due to drought on privately owned or cash leased land or fire on federally managed land.

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Tax Resources Available on Farmers.gov

Filing taxes can be challenging, especially if you are new to running a farm business or USDA programs, or you are trying to forecast your farm's tax bill. To support farmers and ranchers, USDA is partnering with tax experts from across the country to connect producers to information and resources related to taxes and USDA program payments.

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Vineyard & Wine: Templeton's Heinzen Named Farm Manager Of The Year

Templeton's Heinzen Named Farm Manager of the Year

Congratulations to SLO County Farm Bureau member Randy Heinzen for being named the 2022 Farm Manager of the Year by the California Chapter of the American Society of Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers (ASFMRA) last week. Henizen, an Accredited Farm Manager (AFM), serves as President of Vineyard Professional Services and lives in Templeton.

Founded in 1929, ASFMRA is the largest professional association for rural property land experts, boasting over 2100 members in 31 chapters throughout the United States. Learn more here.

Photo courtesy of California Chapter of the American Society of Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers

Discounted tickets for Atascadero Lakeside Wine Festival available now

Early Bird tickets to the 25th Atascadero Lakeside Wine Festival are now available. Tickets cost $60 until April 30. The festival will be held on Saturday, June 25, from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Atascadero Lake Park and Charles Paddock Zoo.

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Winegrape grower nourishes soil to combat drought

When Paul Bernier learned to "dry farm" grapes from old Italian growers in the early 1970s, the idea was simple: "In a climate where it rains in the winter and it's dry in the summer, you had to figure out a way to retain the moisture in the soil," he said.

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Napa County adds micro-wineries to its wine country offerings

Napa County has a new winery category - the micro-winery, though it had a tough birth. A micro-winery must ferment on site no less than 251 gallons and no more than 5,000 gallons of wine. It must be on at least 10 acres and can hold tastings, but no marketing events.

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Research: Cal Poly Awarded California 100 Grant For Agricultural Research

Policy opinions revealed in Consumer Food Insights Report

PUBLISHED ON WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - As the U.S. House Committee on Agriculture reviews the Farm Bill, consumers shared their opinions on food and agriculture policy in a new survey. The third Consumer Food Insights Report from Purdue University offers insights into the popularity of specific policies and how opinions differ depending on a consumer's income.

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Cal Poly awarded California 100 grant for agricultural research

The Cal Poly College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences (CAFES) has received a research award from California 100, the university announced in a news release. The award consists of a $90,000 grant and technical assistance from the Institute for the Future. This provides nearly two dozen students the opportunity to participate in research about...

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Water: SLO Tribune - San Luis Obispo Groundwater Pumped Beyond Sustainable Levels, New Report Shows

SLO Tribune - San Luis Obispo groundwater pumped beyond sustainable levels, new report shows

April 11, 2022 - By Mackenzie Shuman

Drought conditions and overpumping have caused the San Luis Obispo Valley groundwater basin's water levels to plummet in the past year, according to a new report. The report, released in mid-March, outlines how much water was estimated to be pumped from the basin - comprised of the San Luis and Edna Valley subarea basins - in 2021 compared to previous years.

Overall, 6,280 acre-feet of water were extracted from the basin last year, above the basin’s estimated sustainable yield...

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Private well data needed for Adelaida groundwater study

For years, residents of the Adelaida region near Paso Robles have asked for help protecting their fragile water supply. Now, officials with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) are asking the community for its help to accomplish that.

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New Drought-Related Features Added to Well Dashboards on California's Groundwater Live

The Department of Water Resources (DWR, Department) has added two new drought-related features to the Domestic Well and Irrigation Well Dashboards within California's Groundwater Live. The first new feature is a series of new interactive ...

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California could shrink water use in cities by 30% or more, study finds

Green lawns, old appliances and leaky pipes all consume significant amounts of California's water, and researchers have calculated in a new study that the state could reduce water use by more than 30% in cities and suburbs by investing in measures to use water more efficiently.

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A Farmer's Quest to Beat California's Waves of Drought and Deluge

Don Cameron went all in on a trickle-down survival tactic. It could help save America's agricultural heartland-even if he doesn't survive the new water war. In the fields at Terranova Ranch, it was as if a disaster had arrived. Don Cameron, clad in dark green waders, sloshed through the pond that had formed in his orchards and vineyards.

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Farm Bureau Membership Matters

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We cannot support your freedom to farm and ranch without your membership.

Join SLO County Farm Bureau now or renew your membership online. Go to slofarmbureau.org to join, or download the membership form PDF.

Have your renewal notice available to speed up the process; you will need to enter your membership number, name and ZIP code. Renewal dues may be paid online or over the phone by credit card.

We're here to help! Call us if you need us to lookup your member number or we can process your membership for you, at 805-543-3654.

All California county Farm Bureau memberships are processed through the California Farm Bureau Federation, but please reach out to our SLO County office if you need your membership number or have questions.

Join or Renew Your San Luis Obispo County Farm Bureau Membership

Thank You Platinum Members

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