California agricultural operations have been significantly impacted by the recent floods throughout the state. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has technical and financial assistance available to help farmers and livestock producers recover. Impacted producers should contact their local USDA Service Center to report losses and learn more about program options available to assist in their recovery from crop, land, infrastructure and livestock losses and damages.
“Production agriculture is vital to the California economy, and USDA stands ready to assist in the recovery from these catastrophic flood events,” said Zach Ducheneaux, Administrator of USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA), who met with disaster-impacted producers last week in Fresno, Yuba, Salinas Valley and other areas. “I assure you that USDA employees are working diligently to deliver our extensive portfolio of disaster assistance programs and services to all impacted agricultural producers. We’re also proud of recent updates FSA made to disaster assistance programs that allow us to improve our response to California producers.”
Reporting Storm Related Damage Growers that have sustained damages due to these recent storms, need to report damages to the Sacramento County Agriculture Commissioner’s office with the Report of Loss Form.
The Nature Conservancy (TNC) is working with Hog Island Oyster Company and the University of California Santa Cruz to assess the interactions between oyster aquaculture and eelgrass in Tomales Bay, California. The use of drones may help with these studies, and the validation of such aerial surveys could be highly valuable in both their perspective and economy (as this approach could be much less expensive than conventional side-scan sonar or diver-based methods). This TNC-produced video captures the study site and plan beautifully. The Tomales Bay studies are just beginning, so stay tuned to further developments and discussion.
Dr Fred Conte, Extension Aquaculture Specialist at the University of California, Davis, recently shared an upcoming study being lead by the Western Regional Aquaculture Center (WRAC) through the California Aquaculture Association newsletter. This study aims to look into the economic impact regulations have on the Aquaculture industry across the west coast. The research team will look at the shellfish and trout industries in Washington, Oregon, California, Colorado, and Idaho, using industry surveys as well as state and federal agency input to compile an economic analysis.
The 3-year study hopes to increase the understanding across stakeholder groups of how the regulatory process effects the industry and communities. The results of the study and related materials will be shared with stakeholders via internet, newsletters, and follow up meetings. A webinar for the general public is also being planned.
The research team consists of Co-Principal Investigator and Project Director Mr. Gary Fornshell, University of Idaho; and Co-Principal Investigators Ms. Bobbi Hudson, Pacific Shellfish Institute (WA), Dr. William Hanshumaker, Oregon State University; and Dr. Fred Conte, University of California, Davis. The Industry Advisor is Mr. Bill Dewey, Taylor Shellfish Co. (WA). The Project Monitor will be Dr. Gunnar Knapp, of the University of Alaska.
The USA contributes only 1% of the 100 billion dollar worldwide aquaculture industry and meanwhile imports nearly 90% of the seafood consumed here. There is a real opportunity for increased development of sustainable aquaculture that can feed and support our communities. Living Ocean Productions presents a detailed look at the success stories from around the country, and the possibilities available if we continue to explore the potential for aquaculture industry growth.
Meet the farmers growing & harvesting catfish, salmon, oyster, and mussels, and learn about their dedication to environmental sustainability, community engagement, and high quality products.
Aquaculture Business Incubator Taking Proposals in San Diego
In the interest of promoting local business and sustainable seafood, the Port of San Diego has created a process to support local development concepts with their first business incubator – and it’s aimed at aquaculture. The Aquaculture Business Incubator will further the Port’s broader mission to promote fisheries, commerce, navigation, and recreation, by focusing on aquaculture partnerships. And they are ready to receive proposals immediately.
The Aquarium of the Pacific’s exhibit, a partnership with NOAA’s Science on a Sphere, highlights the importance and opportunity for the United States to expand an environmentally sustainable and socially responsible aquaculture industry. Visit the Aquarium of the Pacific and NOAA Fisheries for more information.
On March 13, members of the aquaculture community met at UCLA School of Law for the inaugural California Aquaculture Law Symposium. The presenters and attendees were a mix of aquaculturists, government regulators, non-profit groups and students. Paul Olin, aquaculture specialist for … Continue reading →