Ag Alert!

Murder hornets beware! Honeyford bill to extend the life of the Invasive Species Council clears House in unanimous vote If they had boots, murder hornets, apple maggots and African clawed frogs would be shaking in them at today’s news from the state Legislature. In a unanimous vote, the House of Representatives approved Sen.... Read More...
Hail cuts into would-be record apple crop Some of you may have been affected by the recent hail storms that passed through central Washington. I know quite a few farmers in our area who were hit and are now trying to recoup any losses they suffered to both crops and structures. In fact, the hail damage is... Read More...
Faces of farming and ranching When it comes to today’s agriculture, there are many examples of great farmers and ranchers all over the country doing wonderful things to bring food to the table for those around the world. But few of those farmers and ranchers are recognizable by consumers, mainstream media and influencers. In fact,... Read More...
Wal-Mart joins agriculture sustainability group The world’s largest retailer, Wal-Mart Stores Inc., has joined an alliance of other Fortune 500 companies, including Cargill and Kellogg Co., seeking to make agriculture more sustainable. The Field to Market alliance was started three years ago by the non-profit Keystone Center to improve agricultural productivity and reduce the use... Read More...
Washington grape growers expect record harvest Washington grape growers say they are set to break a harvest record this year, expecting to box about 200,000 tons of the wine fruit. After two dicey years, a combination of warm weather and new acreage may combine to push this year’s crop to 200,000 tons, well above the previous... Read More...
Ag Alert! Calendar for September/October SEPTEMBER Sept. 12 — Organic Homebrewing and Cider Making 101, Center for Local Food and Sustainable Living, Woodinville. 206-498-9731 or 21acres.org Sept. 15 — Farm Animal Welfare Symposium, WSU campus, Pullman. 360-482-3485 or cm.wsu.edu/farmanimalwelfare Sept. 17 – Nov. 19 — WSU Livestock Advisor Training Course, WSU Snohomish County Extension, Everett. 360-428-4270... Read More...
Washington’s wine industry is growing According to a recent editorial in the Tacoma News Tribune, the value of Washington-grown wine to the state economy has increased nearly three times during the Great Recession of the past four years. Washington’s wine industry contributed $8.6 billion to the state’s economy last year, compared with $3 billion in... Read More...
New data center law helps agricultural processors A new Washington state law modifying tax exemptions for data centers also benefits agricultural processors and craft distilleries. Senate Bill 6635 extends a sales and use tax exemption to eligible data centers that begin construction prior to July 1, 2016, and also extends until a business and occupation tax exemption... Read More...
Department of Labor scraps proposed child labor rules You may remember from a previous Ag Alert! that the U.S. Department of Labor had proposed to “increase parity” between agriculture and other industries by changing the rules that allow children to work on their parents’ farms as long as the parents are the majority owners of that farm. The... Read More...
Farm interests keen on new online crop locator Finding data on some 300 commercially grown crops in the Evergreen State often means contacting multiple state, federal and industry sources. However Washington State Department of Agriculture’s new website tool consolidates different data sets to make crop location information more accessible to farmers, agencies, agricultural groups, and the public. Read More...