San Joaquin County seeks state aid after frost damages crops

The February frost led to pits for some San Joaquin County cherry growers. As a result, the county filed for an emergency declaration with the state of California, which the San Joaquin Farm Bureau hopes will help farmers financially. Growers like James Chinchiolo now have frost-damaged cherry trees. What should be a fruitful show is almost hard to find. “It’s the first frost I’ve been through. It’s a lesson learned – big. And certainly we will adapt and go from there,” Chinchiolo, the owner of Lodi Blooms, told KCRA 3. “We are right here again in a situation where we have to adapt to a really light harvest. could take steps to prepare for the next frost by purchasing devices such as wind turbines and machines that blow hot air over orchards to prevent frost. and they are always optimistic. “There’s also this kind of, ‘OK, hang in there, be a warrior and get through these tough times,'” Chinchiolo said. Bruce Blodgett, executive director of the San Joaquin Farm Bureau, said these are tough times for many. many growers in the county because some growers lost half of their crop.” What that means in pure dollars rather than a $200 million crop, about a $100 million crop, so a lot of impact on this industry,” Blodgett says. “Those who were just starting to flower, gett go in and really try to get that crop – that frost just came in and wiped them out.” Blodgett added that this is the third year consecutively that cherry growers had to deal with factors leading to a lighter harvest. In 2021, Blodgett explained that growers had to deal with drought. He also said that the impact of frost varied from one orchard to another, from one culture to another. “Another person actually has a pretty good harvest, who was actually doing some thinning, so we see some real differences depending on where they are in the county,” Blodgett said. “At least those who are going to get a crop are going to get a decent price for a change, so that’s a positive thing, but it’s going to drive up prices at the store.” Blodgett said the county should know in the coming days whether the disaster declaration has been approved by the state. The statement should make funding available to affected producers. Chinchiolo said its cherry orchards should be in season from May to June, while the entire cherry season will last from April to June. While Lodi Blooms always calculates, if the crop is lighter, at the very least, Chinchiolo said, the cherry can be sweeter.

The February frost led to pits for some San Joaquin County cherry growers. As a result, the county filed for an emergency declaration with the state of California, which the San Joaquin Farm Bureau hopes will help farmers financially.

Growers like James Chinchiolo now have frost-damaged cherry trees. What should be a fruitful show is almost hard to find.

“It’s the first frost I’ve been through. It’s a lesson learned – big. And certainly we will adapt and go from there,” Chinchiolo, the owner of Lodi Blooms, told KCRA 3. “We are right here again in a situation where we have to adapt to a really light harvest.

Chinchiolo added that he could take steps to prepare for the next frost by buying devices such as wind turbines and machines that blow hot air over the orchards to prevent frost.

The fourth generation cherry grower pointed out that Lodi Blooms are still calculating how much fruit they will harvest and are still optimistic.

“There’s also this kind of ‘OK, hang in there, become a warrior and get through these tough times,'” Chinchiolo said.

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Bruce Blodgett, executive director of the San Joaquin Farm Bureau, said times are tough for many growers in the county as some growers have lost half their crop.

“What that means in pure dollars rather than a $200 million raise, about a $100 million raise, so a lot of impact on this industry,” Blodgett said. “The ones that were just starting to bloom, coming in and really trying to get that crop – that frost just came in and wiped them out.”

Blodgett added that this is the third year in a row that cherry growers have had to deal with factors leading to a leaner harvest. In 2021, Blodgett explained that growers had to deal with drought. He also said the impact of frost varied from orchard to orchard, crop to crop.

“Another person actually has a pretty good crop, who was actually doing some thinning, so we see some real differences depending on where they are in the county,” Blodgett said. “At least those who are going to get a crop are going to get a decent price for a change, so that’s a positive thing, but it’s going to drive up prices at the store.”

Blodgett said the county should know in the coming weeks whether the disaster declaration has been approved by the state. The statement should make funds available to affected producers.

Chinchiolo said its cherry orchards should be in season from May to June, while the entire cherry season lasts from April to June. While Lodi Blooms always calculates, if the crop is lighter, at the very least, Chinchiolo said, the cherry can be sweeter.

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