RAC/CRMB Weekly Update
To: All Members, Alternates, Packers, Staff, and Interested Industry Partners

Raisin Industry News and the Work of the Raisin Administrative Committee and the California Raisin Marketing Board

June 26, 2015                          

DELIVERIES TO HANDLERS

For the period of June 14, 2015 through June 20, 2015:

1,320 tons of Natural (sun-dried) Seedless (NS) raisins were delivered to handlers.

1,383 tons of all varietal types were delivered.

1,480 tons of all varietal types were delivered for the same period last year.

300,352 tons of NS raisins have been delivered for the year-to-date. This compares to 360,066 tons of NS deliveries as of this date a year ago.

340,807 tons of all varietal types have been delivered YTD, compared to 400,158 tons in 2013-2014.

13,766 tons of the NS deliveries for 2014-15 crop year are organic.

2,709 tons of NS are held on memo storage.

1,034 tons of NS are held for reconditioning.

RAC reports may be found at www.raisins.org


MAY SHIPMENTS

The RAC May 2015 shipment report of Natural (sun-dried) Seedless (NS) Raisins shows that domestic shipments (including Canada) were 14,626 packed tons, compared to 19,444 tons in 2014 (-25%). Year-to-date domestic shipments are 160,889 packed tons compared to 166,855 tons at this time in 2014 (-4%).

NS export shipments (without Canada) for May 2015 were 8,174 packed tons, compared to 13,051 tons in 2014 (-37%). YTD export shipments are 94,276 packed tons, compared to 119,014 tons a year ago, a decrease of 21%.

NS shipments to all destinations year-to-date are 255,166 packed tons, compared to 285,868 packed tons for last year (-11%).


DROUGHT UPDATE - CDFA
6/19/15

Dear Friends,

As the drought continues through these hot summer months, we feel that it is important to reach out to you and compile the various drought announcements that affect the agricultural community. While most of you are well aware and deeply affected by some of these announcements, it is our hope that you will find this weekly compilation useful. Feel free to reach out to us with any questions. The Weekly Drought Update from the Governor's Drought Task Force is attached, along the items below.

Emergency Regulation to Protect Coho Salmon and Steelhead Approved on Russian River Tributaries:
The State Water Resources Control Board approved on June 17 an emergency regulation to provide a small amount of additional water in four tributaries of the Russian River to protect threatened fish. The regulation affects about 13,000 properties in the watersheds of Dutch Bill Creek, Green Valley Creek, Mark West Creek and Mill Creek. Water users in those watersheds will be subject to enhanced conservation measures and water use reporting. Press Release

Drought Conditions Force Difficult Management Decisions For Sacramento River Temperatures:
State and federal officials announced on June 16 the outlines of a revised plan for managing water flows in the Sacramento River for cities and farms while keeping enough cold water in Shasta Reservoir to avoid high temperatures in the river that could be catastrophic for endangered winter-run Chinook salmon. The Sacramento River Temperature Management Plan, which is required annually, guides the release of water from Shasta Reservoir to maintain healthy fisheries during the summer and fall, when water temperatures rise. Press Release

United States Department of the Interior Announces Latest $6.5 Million in Grant Funding to Help Relieve Drought in California:
The Department of the Interior announced on June 16 that its Bureau of Reclamation is awarding grants totaling $6.5 million for more efficient management and conservation of California's water as part of the Obama Administration's effort to bring relief to drought-stricken communities. Press Release

White House Fact Sheet: Supporting Workers, Farmers, and Communities Suffering from Drought:
On June 12 the Obama Administration announced new actions and investments of more than $110 million to support workers, farmers and rural communities suffering from drought and to combat wildfires. In addition, the United States Department of Agriculture is projecting that they will provide at least $1.2 billion this year in assistance to livestock producers facing grazing losses as a result of the drought across the West:
Through the Risk Management Agency, USDA is expanding a program that allows farmers to exclude their exceptionally bad production years, which are often the result of drought, from the calculation of their crop insurance coverage. This ensures that a bad year or two caused by drought does not significantly reduce their crop insurance coverage. This action will provide an estimated $30 million in additional relief to farmers in Fiscal Year 2016, and $42 million in Fiscal Year 2017.
The Department of Labor will award as much as $18 million to the State of California to provide jobs for workers dislocated by the drought.
Through its Livestock Forage Program, USDA projects it will provide at least $1.2 billion in assistance to livestock producers in fiscal year 2015. The program, made possible by the 2014 Farm Bill, provides compensation to farmers and ranchers who suffer grazing losses because of drought or fire.
To support families hardest hit by the drought, the USDA Food and Nutrition Service has committed to working with faith-based and community groups to help them establish at least 760 summer food service meal sites in drought-impacted Central Valley communities in 2015. Last year, 725 sites helped provide meals to kids throughout the region.
The Bureau of Reclamation is announcing $6.5 million in fiscal year 2015 to support water management improvement projects over the next two years. The Federal grants will be combined with local cost-share contributions, making a total of nearly $30 million available to help alleviate the impacts of the drought on communities and agriculture.
To support water utilities and households coping with drought in California, USDA Rural Development will provide at least $7 million to address the drought-related needs of water utilities and households. Press Release
Senior Water Rights Curtailed in Delta, San Joaquin & Sacramento Watersheds:
With drought conditions continuing into the summer months, the State Water Resources Control Board announced on June 12 that there is insufficient water available for senior water right holders with a priority date of 1903 or later in the San Joaquin and Sacramento watersheds and the Delta. The need for further curtailment of more senior rights and curtailments in other watersheds is being assessed weekly. Press Release

USDA to Expand Investment in Water Conservation, Resilience across Drought-Stricken States
NRCS announced on May 18 that it will provide an additional $21 million in technical and financial assistance through EQIP to target areas that are experiencing either exceptional or extreme drought conditions as of the May 5, 2015 U.S. Drought Monitor, which includes parts of California, Kansas, Idaho, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon, Texas, and Utah. The EQIP funding will allow NRCS to help producers apply selected conservation practices to better deal with the effects of drought in their operations, including prescribed grazing, livestock watering facilities, cover crops, nutrient management, irrigation systems, and other water conservation practices. On average, farmers and ranchers contribute half the cost of implementing conservation practices. Press Release

CDFA Now Accepting Applications for State Water Efficiency and Enhancement Program (SWEEP):
The California Department of Food and Agriculture is currently accepting applications for the State Water Efficiency Program (SWEEP). The SWEEP Program provides financial incentives for California agricultural operations to invest in water irrigation and treatment and/or distribution systems that save water and reduce greenhouse gases (energy use). Applications may be submitted until June 29, 2015. Press Release

Karen Ross, Secretary
California Department of Food and Agriculture
1220 N Street, Suite 400
Sacramento, CA 95814
(916) 654-0433
Secretary.Ross@cdfa.ca.gov


DROUGHT UPDATE - CDFA
6/23/15

Dear Friends,

The Weekly Drought Update from the Governor's Drought Task Force is attached, along the items below.

Agriculture Secretary Vilsack Announces $150 Million, New Partnership to Support Water Quality and Quantity in Drought-Stricken California:
In addition to yesterday's $130 million Sierra-Cascade California Headwaters announcement (Press Release), Secretary Vilsack announced California farmers and ranchers will receive 65 percent, or $13.7 million, of the previously announced $21 million EQIP funding for drought stricken states. This USDA funding will help farmers and ranchers apply science-based solutions to mitigate the short and long term effects of drought. Applications are currently being accepted at local NRCS offices.

June 24: State Water Resources Control Board Public Workshop: Summer and Fall Drought Related State Water Project and Central Valley Project Operations in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Watershed.
The purpose of the workshop was to solicit input on drought related operations of the State Water Project (SWP), operated by the Department of Water Resources (DWR), and the Central Valley Project (CVP), operated by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation), in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta (Delta) watershed this summer and fall. Public Notice News Coverage

State Water Board Presents Safe Drinking Water Plan to California Legislature:
The State Water Resources Control Board (State Water Board) shared its blueprint for supplying safe drinking water to all Californians with the delivery of the Safe Drinking Water Plan to the State Legislature last week. The Safe Drinking Water Plan for California focuses on how the State Water Board proposes to improve access to reliable and healthy drinking water for communities throughout the state. The report focuses on the nearly 8,000 public water systems that are under the purview of the Division of Drinking Water. This report does not address private wells and facilities that are not public water systems. Press Release

CDFA Now Accepting Applications for State Water Efficiency and Enhancement Program - Deadline is June 29th (SWEEP):
The California Department of Food and Agriculture is currently accepting applications for the State Water Efficiency Program (SWEEP).
The SWEEP Program provides financial incentives for California agricultural operations to invest in water irrigation and treatment and/or distribution systems that save water and reduce greenhouse gases (energy use). Applications may be submitted until June 29, 2015. Press Release

We've been blogging! Check out our Planting Seeds Blog http://plantingseedsblog.cdfa.ca.gov/wordpress/

Karen Ross, Secretary
California Department of Food and Agriculture
1220 N Street, Suite 400
Sacramento, CA 95814
(916) 654-0433
Secretary.Ross@cdfa.ca.gov

9 CITIES RUNNING OUT OF WATER
MSN Money Article

The nine cities with the worst drought conditions in the country are all located in California, which is now entering its fourth consecutive year of drought as demand for water is at an all-time high. The long-term drought has already had dire consequences for the state's agriculture sector, municipal water systems, the environment, and all other water consumers.

Based on data provided by the U.S. Drought Monitor, a collaboration between academic and government organizations, 24/7 Wall St. identified nine large U.S. urban areas that have been under persistent, serious drought conditions over the first six months of this year.
The Drought Monitor classifies drought by five levels of intensity: from D0, described as abnormally dry, to D4, described as exceptional drought. Last year, 100% of California was under at least severe drought conditions, or D2, for the first time since Drought Monitor began collecting data. It was also the first time that exceptional drought - the highest level - had been recorded in the state. This year, 100% of three urban areas in the state are in a state of exceptional drought. And 100% of all nine areas reviewed are in at least extreme drought, or D3.

According to Brad Rippey, a meteorologist with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), California has a Mediterranean climate in which the vast majority of precipitation falls during the six month period from October through March. In fact, more than 80% of California's rainfall is during the cold months. As a result, "it's very difficult to get significant changes in the drought picture during the warm season," Rippey said. He added that even when it rains during the summer, evaporation due to high temperatures largely offsets any accumulation.

A considerable portion of California's environmental, agricultural, and municipal water needs depends on 161 reservoirs, which are typically replenished during the winter months. As of May 31, the state's reservoirs added less than 6.5 million acre-feet of water over the winter, 78% of the typical recharge of about 8.2 million acre-feet. A single acre-foot contains more than 325,000 gallons of water. This was the fourth consecutive year that reservoir recharge failed to breach the historical average.

The U.S. Drought Monitor is produced by the National Drought Mitigation Center at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, the USDA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). 24/7 Wall St. identified the nine urban areas with populations of 75,000 or more where the highest percentages of the land area was in a state of exceptional drought in the first six months of 2015. All data are as of the week ending June 2.


UPCOMING CRMB MEETINGS

SAVE THE DATE
July 14, 2015

For more information www.loveyourraisins.com

UPCOMING INDUSTRY EVENTS

Fresno Food Expo
Fresno, CA
July 22 & 23, 2015
www.fresnofoodexpo.com/
Raisin Administrative Committee
www.raisins.org
559-225-0520

California Raisin Marketing Board
www.loveyourraisins.com
559-248-0287