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  • California walnut yields continue to set records

    Jun 23rd, 2016

    Industry officials expect the 2016 crop to surpass that number. The industry could produce 625,000 tons when the 2016 crop estimate is released in early September.There is a downside to these record harvests. As the number of walnuts goes up, prices have come down. Combined with foreign crops, some varieties of Walnuts have seen price drops of 20 to 30 percent.In an effort to boost walnut demand, the California Walnut Commission has boosted its advertising budget from $2 million to $15 million.Much of the increase in production is due to more plantings in the San Joaquin Valley and Sacramento region. San Joaquin County accounts for 14 percent of the state’s walnut crop. Butte County makes up 12 percent of the statewide total.The U.S. Department of Agriculture figures show that California now has 365,000 acres devoted to the crop. Bearing acreage climbed 10,000 from the previous year to 300,000, as non-bearing acres since 2013 increased 20,000 to 65,000 acres.Estimates from nursery survey suggest that 17,000 acres of walnuts are planted each year, although some of those planting are replacing old trees.