The effects of the drought on communities that rely on agriculture could be devastating this year. Businesses that support farmers will provide little service, manage small crops and employ fewer people, while farmers are useless on their farms.
“We commend the inclusion of the Governor’s California Small Agricultural Business Drought Relief Grant Program in May to revise the budget as an important first step in ensuring the stability of our food supply and recognizing the value of puy provided by our farms, ”said California Rice Commission President and CEO Tim Johnson.
“Our suppliers and supporting businesses from mill and dryer to agricultural pilots are essential to our farms. Without them we can’t survive. We have to do everything possible to make sure that when it rains again and farming will return to normal that our business partners and communities will still be, ”Johnson said.
The drought will affect the entire Central Valley, but will feel particularly stiff along the Sacramento River, due to the historically low rainfall in the Lake Shasta watershed. The Northern California Water Association estimates nearly $ 1 billion in impacts in the Sacramento Valley. For rice, more than $ 251 million impact will be felt by mills, dryers and service providers in the industry, with the loss of an estimated 1,500 jobs.
At a time when every drop of water can be key to survival, paddy fields are also a critical life line for nearly 230 wildlife species, providing important replacement wetlands due to drought conditions. reduce available natural habitat.