San Joaquin Valley Producers Look to the Future

After a year of hardships, farmers in California’s San Joaquin Valley are optimistic for the future. The valley is California’s largest farming area, producing everything from nuts and dairy to wine.
From 2000 to 2008 agriculture income doubled to $7.6 billion in the valley. With the recession in full swing the biggest change seen was dairy prices. “Agriculture is the engine that can drive an economic recovery in California,” said Farm Bureau president Paul Wagner. Although prices dipped in 2009 economists expect prices to recover in 2010. Graduates in the area are having no problem finding jobs in the agricultural industry or related fields.
San Joaquin Valley is a good location for farming because the weather is warm and dry from spring to fall, which is ideal weather for growing a variety of crops. Farmers face hardships in the area such as water restrictions, animal rights activists and rising environmental improvement costs to lower pollution and improve air quality. Despite these problems producers continue to put money back into California’s economy by supplying jobs and purchasing seed and equipment from other companies across the state.
As economic conditions improve, San Joaquin Valley is expected to grow even more with farms, ranches and wineries.
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