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Paperwork snafu halting H-2A workers at Mexican border

Up to 2,000 potential workers stymied at Tijuana crossing, another 800 stuck at Nuevo Laredo

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Fourth cherry residue test results are available

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For the fourth consecutive year, the Washington Tree Fruit Research Commission has conducted a trial to provide the Northwest cherry industry basic information about residues of commonly used pesticides.

These studies are intended to help growers

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Obama goes without Congress on immigration reform

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President Barack Obama will announce today his plan to use executive authority to move on immigration reform.

Obama has said the immigration system is broken and that he will use administrative powers to move on issues

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Building for the apple boom

Washington’s apple production has ramped up faster than expected.

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Schlect: United Thawed

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●  The American Frozen Food Institute has launched a 30 million dollar national effort to “encourage consumers to take a fresh look at frozen foods.” “Frozen. How Fresh Stays Fresh” is the tag line. This

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Merivon labeled in New York

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Merivon fungicide has been registered for use on pome and stone fruit in New York. In field trials, it has controlled diseases such as apple scab and powdery mildew in pome fruit and brown rot

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High-tech cherry packing facility debuts

New plant doubles the cherry volume for Washington Fruit.

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Technology is the future of cherry packing

West Coast cherry packers are quickly adopting new sorting technology.

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Schlect: On a roll

Anne MacMillan has left her post as deputy chief of staff to Secretary Vilsack at USDA to join Roll Global,

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How much pheromone for codling moth?

Researcher finds codling moths need much less perfume to disrupt their mating.

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Opal apple verified as non-GMO

FirstFruits seeks to head off confusion with a GMO apple that might be approved.

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Growers make H-2A work

Washington is the fourth largest employer of H-2A workers in the country after North Carolina, Georgia, and Florida.

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USApple president visits the other Washington

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Jim Bair, president of the U.S. Apple Association, visited Washington State this week for the first time since taking over the helm of the organization from Nancy Foster at the beginning of this year.

Bair, who

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Nematode-resistant rootstocks available

Improved rootstocks are available, though more field testing is needed.

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New approach needed for nematodes

Avoid white varieties if planting in a site with root knot nematodes.

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Labor shortage favors imports

New study says a shortage of labor is hampering expansion of U.S. fruit production.

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Michigan growers worry about labor

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If nothing gets done to solve immigration issues this year, and, with it, assure a supply of domestic seasonal workers for agriculture, farmers will have to find ways to adjust.

Dawn Drake, manager of the Michigan

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Paying for rest time

Paying a piece-rate equivalent for rest breaks helps keep workers productive and motivated, a labor specialist says.

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New clothing material may better protect workers

Study looks at lightweight, Teflon-like material might have potential for protective clothing for pesticide applicators.

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Prevention is best strategy

Mites continue to develop resistance to new miticides.

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New biofumigant registered

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A soil biofumigant developed for both conventional and organic farms offers a new tool in what is becoming an increasingly restrictive practice.

Soil fumigation helps eliminate soil-borne diseases, replant problems, nematodes, and weeds, and gets perennial

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New herbicide — resistant crops

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Both Dow Agrosciences and Monsanto Company expect to have new herbicide-resistant crops and new herbicides available in 2015.

Dow is developing Enlist corn, which is resistant to both 2,4-D and aryloxyfenoxyproprionic acid herbicides used to control

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DriftWatch grows

pecialty crops growers, especially those who grow grapes, will have new cause for concern in 2015 when new genetically modified field crops are expected to come to fields near their orchards and vineyards.

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Are you the employer of choice?

Three apple producers look to mechanization to help deal with potential labor shortages.

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Reducing food safety risks at every opportunity

Research is assessing the food safety risks of tree fruit production practices.

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Opal apple verified non-GMO

FirstFruits heads off confusion with a GMO-apple that might be approved.

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How to make every drop count

Simple changes made with inexpensive tools can greatly improve spray applications.

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Organic apple growers are optimistic

Washington State will run out of organic apples this season.

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Selenium is toxic to bees

Entomologists from the University of California, Riverside, have found that selenium can cause delays in development and mortality in honeybees.

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Bees are driving pesticide decisions

The desire to protect bees is becoming institutionalized.

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How bad things in the environment gang up and kill bees

The synergistic effect of pesticides in hives.

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Control leafhoppers to avoid virus

The risk of grapevine redleaf virus makes controlling leafhoppers all the more important.

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Bees live in a toxic world

Planting more flowers would help solve honeybee decline.

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Bryan Mrachek, Young Grower, March 1, 2014

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Bryan Mrachek / grower / Malaga, Washington

age / 27

family farm / Lucky Bohemian Farms, which is owned by Laura and Mike Mrachek, Bryan’s parents

crops / Cherries, apples, wine grapes and blueberries

title / Farm Manager

other experience /

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Pruning demonstrations on stopping postharvest disease

Three Northwest industry groups have organized pruning demonstrations on how to stop postharvest diseases spread by infected Manchurian crabapple trees.

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New pests threaten IPM

Pest management programs have become softer and more stable over the past few decades, but new invasive pests could change that.

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Attract and kill

Michigan researchers have designed a device for oriental fruit moth.

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Save money by applying pesticides where it’s needed

Perimeter sprays: Growers can save money applying pesticides only where they’re most needed.

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Stinkbug derails IPM

Researchers fine-tune methods to control brown marmorated stinkbug.

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Be aware of residues from late sprays

In the future, growers will find pesticide regulations getting tighter, not looser.

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EPA proposes pesticide exposure rules

EPA proposes revised safety rules on pesticide exposure to farm workers

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Wenatchee’s Cascade Analytical offers cleaning & sanitation workshop March 4-5

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Cascade Analytical is offering a two-day workshop March 4-5   for fresh produce packers & fresh-cut processors to provide information on  best practices learned from national experts and practical case studies.  The workshop fee is $300.

Learn

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Give feedback on crop insurance

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Washington State Department of Agriculture will hold listening sessions in February to get feedback from specialty crop growers on the effectiveness of the crop insurance programs available to

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Column: Checkbooks in hand

Record fruit prices draw international investors to Pacific Northwest agriculture.

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Growers asked to tax themselves

Michigan growers to vote in February on proposed Tree Fruit Commission.

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Labor worries

Michigan is at the north end of the migrant stream.

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Sustainable organics

Jim Koan wants organic practices to be based on science, not politics.

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Guest worker summit planned for labor conference

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A half-day summit on how seasonal employers can best use the federal H-2A guest worker program to obtain a legal workforce will be held on February 12, the day before the Washington Farm Labor Association’s

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Meet Chris Britton, USApple chair

Securing an adequate workforce is the organization’s number-one priority.

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No ban on small cherries

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Washington’s fresh cherry packers will continue to be allowed to ship 12-row red cherries, members of the Washington Cherry Marketing Committee decided at their meeting in early December.

The committee commissioned economist Dr. Desmond O’Rourke to

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