In our county, avocado growers have been facing tough circumstances while showing the result of a heightening cost of water coupled in ongoing heatwaves and drought. The crop is likely to generate just about $82.8 million through the region within the past year, all down from the $152.9 million in 2020. All according to the yearly crop report. It’s likely the first time that avocado fruit have only been able to generate less than $100 million per year since 1996.
The productivity has been the biggest issue facing avocado growers in 2021. All while trees have produced an average of 2 tons per acre. Down from 4 tons an acre within the year before. The amount of land which has been equally harvested. The crop’s value has bumped up right to $3,117 per ton.
But where did this come from?
For starters, a lack of precipitation played a major role, being that because of the absense of raine, San Diego has essentially recorded around two years of less than satisfactory below-average precipitation while farmers have been absorbing the impacts. In which case, there’s hopes that a wet winter will re-up the avocado production in a major way. Growers are always needing to irrigate from year round. Which, in itself costs more but also doesn’t flush salts from the ground as effectively.
While California handles record dry conditions, there’s also been another threat from the weather. Heatwaves. They’ve made it way difficult for growers in the county. Of course, the rise in temperatures caused trees to shed avocados as they’re ripe. It’s typical for 100-degree temperature to occur for August heats. But for an occurrence to happen about four-or five days in a row. Avocado farmers are increading land from production as the cost of water has risen to unbelievable heights. Growers have therefore in turn, harvested about 14,458 acres from last year. Down from beyond 26,000 acres in 2007. As a result, the cost of water has tripled. Beyond a year, the Fallbrook Public Utility District and Rainbow Municipal Water District have been cutting ties with the country’s wholesaler: San Diego County Water Authority. Those agencies are joining forces with the Eastern Municipal Water District in Riverside County, where water rates are likely to be less volatile.
This is in hopes that agriculture is stabilized. The demand has dropped across the last two decades from 20,000 acre feet a year to nearly about 8,000 acre feet a year. Any acre foot is just enough to cover an acre a food deep, approximately 325,851 gallons. Water authority officials believe that savings shown by the water agencies are just too short-lived while, joining Eastern could expose agencies to state drought restrictions.
On the opposite side of the spectrum, the bigger cash crops included bedding plants, perennials and cacti as well as succulents, all according to the report. They would supplant ornamental trees and shrubs, as they have been for the past 12 years. However, honey and beeswax would suffer from an even bigger decline, as only a little of the overall farm economy still fell 85 percent, no thanks to the drought stopping bees’ from making honey.