Ag News: USMCA Opportunities
**Additional sales opportunities for some California farmers and ranchers should open with implementation of the new U.S.-Mexico-Canada trade agreement that took effect last Wednesday.
Farm groups say the effective date of the agreement comes at a crucial time, as the agricultural economy struggles with the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Canada ranks second among foreign customers for California farm products, and Mexico ranks fifth.
**Payments for dairy farmers from the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program have now topped $1 billion.
According to the latest USDA data, the dairy payments total $1.045 billion and were made to 17,633 dairy farmers, with an average payment per farm at just under $60,000.
Milkbusiness.com reports, the payment totals are an increase of $150 million from the previous week, with an additional 2,411 dairy farmers receiving payments.
**There certainly is no shortage of table grape varieties out of California.
The USDA names at least 80 kinds of grapes produced in the Golden State, and some growers offer varieties NOT included on the official list.
Flame seedless accounts for the most fresh-market acreage in the state with 14,606, according to the USDA, followed by Scarlet Royal with 6,810 acres, crimson seedless with 6,800 acres, red globe with 6,529 acres and Autumn King with 5,952 acres.
Growers and shippers say it’s hard to pick a favorite.