Russia says "Nyet" to Sacred Nut along with Khaganate of Nuland

Submitted: Aug 31, 2014
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

Or as we sometimes say, "Das Kaganreich des Nulands." However you spell it, here in the Valley, even Ukrainian Nazi militia, backed by American neocon elites, can be a cause for whining. -- blj

 

 

8-8-14

Voice of America

US Almond Growers Feel Impact of Russian Import Limits

<!--[if !supportLists]-->·         <!--[endif]--><!--[if gte vml 1]>

<![endif]--><!--[if !vml]-->Video<!--[endif]--> Russia Bans Import of Food From West in Response to Sanctions

Reuters

http://www.voanews.com/content/us-almond-growers-say-nuts-to-russian-import-limits/2407287.html

With Russia pitting itself against the United States, the European Union and other major trading partners with bans on agricultural imports, an outsized share of the trade dispute is falling where Vladimir Putin may never have expected: On the almond growers of central California.

Almonds are the top agricultural export to Russia from the Golden State, followed by pistachios, rice, prunes and wine. Last year, California exported $102.4 million worth of the nuts to Russia, making it the eighth largest foreign market. Nationwide, almonds rank third among farm products exported to Russia, behind chicken and cattle.

Before U.S. trade friction with Russia started rising early this year, California nut growers had big plans for Russia--a market the world's largest almond processor, Blue Diamond Growers, first cracked in 1968.

“For us, it was one of the bright spots on the market place,” said Jim Zion, managing director of Meridian Nut Growers, the sales and marketing arm for a pool of California nut growers.

Hopes rose when Russian importers last year visited Meridian's offices in Clovis, California, for the first time. Their interest in how nuts are grown and processed was seen as a sign of increasing interest in trade, Zion said. However, no buyers came this year.

Zion had laid plans to mount Meridian's first-ever visit to a food show in Russia in September, but called off the trip recently because of the political tensions. Any hope of reviving the trip died when Russian President Putin announced import bans.

“It's definitely not going to happen now,” Zion said on Thursday.

Blue Diamond hired a marketing manager fluent in Russian about five years ago in a bid to boost business in Russia, said Elaine Rominger, an almond grower who sits on the 104-year old cooperative's board of directors.

“Any time that there is a ban on exports it's detrimental to crop growers,” she said. “It's bad for the country, both countries, because it doesn't allow us free trade.”

Russian sanctions, insignificant

A 
Blue Diamond spokeswoman said Russia's sanctions would not have a significant effect on its business.

Even before the ban, U.S. almond exports to Russia were softening, after years of growth. Total shipments of U.S. almonds to Russia are down this year for the first time since 2009. From January to June, exports were $47.1 million, down about a third from the same period a year earlier.

Growers said they easily can find alternative buyers for their almonds in places like China and Europe, where demand is strong. Russia's ban should not hurt prices, they added.

Still, the loss in Russian sales is a headache for an industry already struggling with a historic California drought.

The size of the almond harvest this year and the quality of the nuts have been hurt by the lack of water, Blue Diamond's Rominger said.

Russia's restrictions are “obviously not a bonus point,” according to Zion. “It's one more obstacle we have to overcome in farming.” 

 

| »

Idyllic monounsaturated fats and the fifth level of drought

Submitted: Aug 31, 2014
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

One of our eastcoast editors sent this insightful article about the political economy of the Sacred Nut that appeared in The Atlantic, from Boston. We were intrigued by the literate good sense of the author, James Hamblin, MD, so included some other titles from his recent work at the bottom.


Enjoy Spanish Marcona almonds -- blj


8-28-14

The Atlantic

 Read More »
| »

As the Wolf arrives, Merced Agriculture gibbers on

Submitted: Aug 27, 2014
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 There have been way too many groundwater management plans to make plans in Merced County and they have now come back to bite agriculture's habitual liars you know where. The wolf is here at last and the ag rhetoric is exhausted. 

Representatives of the Merced County Farm Bureau and California Women for Agriculture have been animated by what has come to be called "the Sloan Sale" (26,000 acre feet of groundwater sold to a Stanislaus County water district over two years at a minimum of $500/acre foot). On August 26, they were before the Board of Supervisors again demanding county action on the groundwater situation.

 Read More »
| »

Merced City Council, Aug. 4, 2014: change orders and contingencies

Submitted: Aug 25, 2014
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 

The city council, like most legislative bodies, includes a number of items early in its agenda that are voted on together. It is called the "consent calendar" and items may be removed from it for individual attention. Councilman Mike Murphy asked that Item 8, a staff recommendation that the council accept a bid from a Fresno construction company to build a new laboratory building at  the city wastewater treatment facility, be removed for council discussion. After noting that "it is great that we have one of the bidders coming in 10 percent lower than the other two," Councilman Murphy objected specifically to the contract allowing a 25-percent increase for change orders on the authority of the city manager alone without council deliberation. Murphy thought 10 percent was good enough, noting that a $450,000 contingency fund was also included in the contract.

 Read More »
| »

Making a graph of stupidity and UC grant whoring

Submitted: Aug 22, 2014
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 “We can’t manage what we don’t measure,” he said. “We’ve been putting a lot of efforts in developing intelligent infrastructure that will develop better information and lead to better decision-making.”

 

What is wrong with this statement?

1) It is historically absurd. Human beings have managed quite well without  "intelligent infrastructure."  But, of course, UC professors believe that real management of human affairs begins with measurements precise enough to build, launch and trigger the nuclear weapons for which UC is so famous.

 Read More »
| »

What's the price of city water for the Safeway water-bottling plant in a drought?

Submitted: Aug 17, 2014
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 

 The Badlands Journal editorial board were thinking about water on Saturday because of the big water-bond, unanimous-minus-one vote in the Legislature last week. And other things as well, like Steve Sloan and Steve Smith's sale of 26,000 acre feet of groundwater from under their adjoining properties on the west side of the county for at least $13 million to Del Puerto Water District in Stanislaus County. Pretty slick deal for the publicly spirited Sloan, who served as the chairman of the Merced County Planning Commission during the real estate boom. We laughed at  the outrage on display in the county Board of Supervisors' chambers by most of his former political cronies, except westside Supervisor Jerry O'Banion, 67, reelected without opposition in June to his seventh term, the present chairman of the board. It was O'Banion that appointed Sloan to the planning commission.

 

 Read More »
| »

Introducing... The Fabulous Klugoza

Submitted: Aug 16, 2014
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

      

“With Dennis and Scott — a bipartisan team of former congressmen — at the helm … Foley will offer our business clients the comprehensive strategic and legal counsel needed on the myriad of complex public policy and regulatory issues that they face,” said David T. Ralston, Jr., chair of Foley's government and public policy practice, in a statement.-- Megan Wilson, thehill.com, Feb. 6, 2014

 Read More »
| »

We're not into necrophilia, but thanks for thinking of us

Submitted: Aug 14, 2014
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 In the last several weeks, a member of the Badlands Journal editorial board has received 88 emails from various appendages of the Democratic Party, from Congressional candidate Amanda "Cotton Queen" Renteria (collecting on her fine work on the latest Farm Bill, which guaran-damn-tees agribusiness income if they buy the right insurance from the insurance industry) all the way past Steve Israel (aptly named chair of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, to be renamed "Friends of Israel" in honor of the latest act of genocide in Gaza), and from both the President and the Vice President (about whom the less said the better).

Each email announces another grave emergency to the very life of the Democratic Party and suggests, cajols, orders and demands that our editor pay the minimal sum of five dollars to avoid the collapse ... of what?

The Democratic Party?

 Read More »
| »

Naomi Klein draws a bead on TNC

Submitted: Aug 05, 2014
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 The Nature Conservancy “has just lost its moral compass,” said Kierán Suckling, executive director of the Center for Biological Diversity, a group that works extensively on endangered species. “The very idea of oil drilling inside a reserve is utterly wrong, and it’s especially disturbing in this case because the Attwater’s prairie chicken is one of the most endangered species in the entire country. It could very well be the next species to go extinct in the United States.” -- Justin Gillis, New York Times, Aug. 3, 2014

 

 Read More »
| »

How m any Israeli civilians have been killed by Hamas rockets?

Submitted: Aug 04, 2014
By: 
Badlands Journal editorial board

 We thought it might be interesting to try to find the answer to the question since our government is paying for the continuing slaughter of civilians in Gaza who cannot afford  lobby groups as rich, powerful and corrupting as the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, the infamous AIPAC and the American arms manufacturers. 

According to the reliable televised report this morning we could find, the number of Israeli civilians killed by Hamas rockets from Gaza hovers in the low single figures, at three.  More than 1,800 Palestinians have been killed.

In an era when economic and diplomatic forces not favorable to the US  are changing the geopolitical map -- Berlin-Beijing Railway, Russian-Chinese energy agreements, the new BRICS development bank independent of the IMF, the World bank and the US dollar, and Mercasur and other alliances in Latin America, for starters -- our government is supporting Nazis tryinng to commit genocide in the Ukraine and Zionists trying harder to commit genocide in Gaza. In fact, wherever you look, our only foreign policy seems to be force. One quarter of our total number of embassies do not have ambassadors and the two parties of belligerent brats in Congress do not seem to care. 

 Read More »
| »

More Articles-->

To manage site Login