Todd Fitchette

Todd
Fitchette
Associate Editor,
Western Farm Press

Todd Fitchette, associate editor with Western Farm Press, spent much of his journalism career covering agriculture in California and the western United States. Aside from reporting about issues related to farm production, environmental regulations and legislative matters, he has extensive experience covering the dairy industry, western water issues and politics. His journalistic experience includes local daily and weekly newspapers, where he was recognized early in his career as an award-winning news photographer.

Fitchette is US Army veteran and a graduate of California State University, Chico. He resides in Tulare, Calif.

Articles
Over 152,000 acres of Pima cotton planted in California in 2016
California cotton acreage jumps 35 percent to 218,000
After six years of trending downward, California cotton growers are slated to harvest more cotton than they did last year, which fell to the lowest level since the Great Depression. Overall acreage based on the state’s pink bollworm survey – the most accurate accounting of cotton acreage in the state – reflects a 35 percent increase to 218,713 acres. By type this includes a 31 percent hike in Pima acreage to just over 152,000 acres. Upland acreage figures are up 44 percent to over 66,000.
California eradicates the European grapevine moth 1
California declares eradication of the European grapevine moth seven years after its discovery in Napa County
Citrus greening disease continues southern California spread
Two new HLB finds in Southern California
Huanglongbing, or citrus greening disease, continues to spread across southern California.
Almonds most valuable crop for Fresno County agriculture
2015 Fresno County crop value slides 6.5 percent
Fresno County agricultural value dropped 6 percent in 2015. County has fallen from top spot as leading producer of food and fiber in the United States.
Consumer demand for California mandarins is growing
Mandarin plantings continue to increase in California
Overall citrus acreage in California is up about 1 percent though on a variety basis the figures are a mixed bag – or box – as the case may be. While Navel oranges remain the most popular citrus variety in the state at over 120,000 bearing and non-bearing acres, orange plantings declined in the past two years as the popularity of easy-peel mandarin varieties continues to win favor with consumers and by default, growers.
Low milk prices trigger Farm Bill payments to California producers
Farm Bill to pay out $11m to dairy farmers under MPP

More than $11 million in financial assistance to U.S. dairy farmers will go out under a Farm Bill program designed to help milk producers when margins hit certain levels.

The Market Protection Program (MPP) is one of many programs under the 2014 Farm Bill that assists American farmers and ranchers during troublesome market conditions.

In California this means 18 dairy operations will receive over $305,000 in payments based on their coverage levels for the May/June period. No payments will be issued to Arizona milk producers.

The Santa Lucia Highlands are known for their cool-climate, quality wine grapes
Santa Lucia Highlands expects higher quality grapes
Santa Lucia Highlands expects higher quality grapes on smaller 2016 harvest
Dairyman John Droogh explains California practices to visiting farmers
Cotton producers from Plains States visit California

For 28 years the National Cotton Council has facilitated a Producer Information Exchange (P.I.E.) program across the United States as a means of giving growers an opportunity to visit agricultural operations in other regions of the country.

In early August cotton producers from Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas visited farming operations in California’s San Joaquin Valley, seeing first-hand how growers raise premium cotton alongside a host of other crops.

Almond Alliance of California rebrands efforts, image
Almond Alliance of California marks official start
August marks beginning of Almond Alliance of California
EPA cancels Flubendiamide use in the United States
EPA cancels Flubendiamide insecticide use in the US 4
In what’s being called a “first-of-its-kind” move, the Environmental Protection Agency cancelled registration of an insecticide that was previously approved for use and ultimately labeled in 49 states. The active ingredient Flubendiamide, marketed in the United States by Bayer as Belt, is a Group 28 insecticide labeled for use in about 200 different crops, including almonds, pistachios, walnuts, stone fruit, and cotton, numerous vegetable crops, alfalfa, melons, and sorghum, to name just a few.
Cal Poly Pomona research greenhouse will help citrus industry fight ACP
Citrus industry partners with university in ACP fight 2
The new facility on the Cal Poly Pomona campus will support research and rearing of the Tamarixia radiata wasp, a natural enemy of the ACP. The wasp was discovered by University of California researchers several years ago in Pakistan and brought back to the United States under permit with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Production of Tamarixia already take place at a state facility in nearby Riverside, Calif., but those numbers – about two million insects per year – are not enough as the psyllid continues to expand its footprint across California. Psyllids have been found as far north as the Bay Area and the northern San Joaquin Valley.
Forbes AgTech Summit addresses need for global advancements in Ag technology
Agriculture needs high-speed link with tech world 1
Julie Borlaug says global agriculture needs high tech advancements to come faster if it's going to address the challenges of feeding a growing world population
Forbes AgTech Summit addresses farm labor shortages
High-tech answers sought for farm labor shortages 2
Labor issues remain a key concern of growers and food processors, according to Tom Nassif, president and chief executive officer for Western Growers Association, an agricultural trade association that represents about half of the nation’s fruit, vegetable and tree nut production in Arizona, California and Colorado. “Our labor supply is at a critical stage right now, as is our water supply,” Nassif said.
Ray Olivarez produces queen honeybees in northern California and Hawaii
Careful management promotes healthy honeybees 1
Ray Olivarez maintains low honeybee losses through variety of purposeful practices
Herbicide drift research study
2016 UC Davis Weed Day marks 60th anniversary
UC Davis Weed Science Program marks 60th anniversary of its annual weed day
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