California Walnut Forecast Down Slightly and Vilsack on ReConnect Program
**California’s walnut crop, now in harvest, is forecast at 720,000 tons, which would be down by 1% from last year.
However, California Walnut Board and Commission CEO Robert Verloop said the industry consensus is that the yield may be significantly higher, likely between 775,000 to 800,000 tons.
California produces 99% of America’s walnuts.
This year, the state had 400,000 bearing acres of walnuts, with 60% of the nuts destined for export markets.
**Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack announced the USDA is awarding $502 million in loans and grants to help provide high-speed internet for rural areas in 20 states.
USDA is making these investments through the ReConnect Program.
Vilsack says, high-speed internet will improve the rural economy, and help rural businesses gain access to new markets, as well as help rural residents access better health care and educational opportunities.
More investment announcements are expected in the coming weeks.
**USDA data shows export sales of corn, beans, and wheat all fell week-to-week during the seven days ending on September 15.
Corn sales during the week dropped sharply to 182,300 metric tons from 583,000 the week before.
Soybean sales to overseas buyers dropped to 446,000 metric tons, sharply lower than 843,000 tons a week earlier.
Wheat sales came in at 183,500 metric tons.