California rains cause a muddy mess

It’s intense and it’s too early to tell what this will do. That seems to be the sentiment from growers about the effects of the sizeable rainstorms California is seeing, enough to cause evacuation orders, flooding and more.

“It is crazy here in Santa Maria! We have had so much rain in the last 24 hours with record rainfall in some parts,” says Crystal Chavez of Gold Coast Packing. She notes that that region is seeing flooding and closed roadways with areas receiving water at rates it hasn’t seen in decades.

Photo: Spinaca Farms

“It is too early to say how our crops are affected due to the rain. That will all be assessed over the next few days,” Chavez says. “We have had a few issues with getting our product from the desert to our facility in Santa Maria due to roadway closures. So our trucks have had to be re-routed and that's causing delays but we are working through all of the minor issues. We are hanging in there.”

Keeping fields drained
Over at Bobalu Berries, Cindy Jewell shares that sentiment. “We are getting a lot of rain throughout the state that is going to continue off and on for several more days,” she says. “It's hard to provide any kind of crop update until the weather subsides. Currently, we are just focused on keeping the fields drained so we don't get water build up beyond the furrows.”

Photo: Spinaca Farms

“In the short run, it’s a muddy mess on the Central Coast of California,” says Zack Andrade of Spinaca Farms. “It’s too early to tell how much damage has been done from the rain but growers are certainly having to adjust their planting schedules and will most likely have to stay longer in Imperial/Yuma and Northern Mexico for the spring crops. Supply disruptions will most likely be seen in March and April, as plantings that can’t go in right now are for crops slated to harvest in the spring of 2023 on the Central Coast.”

For more information:
Crystal Chavez
Gold Coast Packing      

Cindy Jewell
Bobalu Berries 

Zack Andrade
Spinaca Farms

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