Almond hulls should be in good supply for dairies next year.
USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) reported today that California’s 2011 almond production is forecast to increase 6% over last year's crop.
The initial subjective forecast for the 2011 crop is 1.75 billion pounds, NASS noted. California’s estimated bearing acreage for 2011 is 750,000.
California accounts for about 99% of the nation’s almond production. Almond hulls are an important feed stuff for California dairies.
NASS said that after a good winter with excellent chilling hours, California’s 2011 almond crop bloom began. A cold spring lengthened the bloom, causing more overlap between varieties. Cold weather can affect bee activity, but pollination was successful this year and California almond trees set a good crop.
Freezing temperatures this spring did affect the northern regions more than the south, but frost damage was not significant, NASS said. Older plantings suffered some damage from the strong winds that accompanied the spring storms, but overall damage was minimal. Spotty damage from hail was also noted. Low disease and insect pressure have been reported.
NASS added that with all the precipitation California has seen this winter, lack of water for irrigation is not the problem it was a few years ago. Normal levels of shed have been reported. The crop in general is reported to be good with heavy sets noted on several varieties.