Yuma's 6th Annual Harvest Dinner, held Thursday, February 25, once again brought industry leaders, local harvesters and friends of the agriculture community together to celebrate Yuma's contribution to our nation's dinner tables and raise funds for the Yuma County Ag Producers Scholarship Fund.
The alfresco evening featured cuisine by four local chefs, entertainment by local Yuma band Common Ground, a live auction and four surprise tributes that further recognized future farmers, harvesters, regional and national agriculture partners.
Working to keep U.S. food crops safe, a team of researchers from the University of Arizona Mel and Enid Zuckerman College of Public Health and College of Agriculture and Life Sciences has received funding to study irrigation water quality.
The team will focus on developing monitoring strategies and guidelines to provide food safety improvements that can be used by the U.S. produce industry to prevent crops from becoming contaminated.
Agriculture is big business in Arizona, and industry leaders in Yuma County are teaming up with the University of Arizona to arm growers with science and information they need to swiftly tackle threats to their profitability.
The recently launched Yuma Center of Excellence for Desert Agriculture - YCEDA – will provide the latest research and information in pest management, food safety, plant diseases, water conservation and more.
The UA's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences has named Paul Brierley the inaugural director of its recently launched Yuma Center of Excellence for Desert Agriculture.
The center, based in Yuma, is a public-private partnership between the college and the Arizona and California desert agriculture industry, dedicated to addressing "on-the-ground" industry needs through collaboration and research.
Imagine yourself going to the grocery store and scanning the barcode of a head of lettuce with your cell phone. Within moments, a screen pops up on your cell phone detailing where the head was grown, the harvest date, and a recipe to use. This form of technology is not too farfetched thanks to the work of Kurt Nolte, director and Extension agent with the UA Cooperative Extension Service in Yuma County, Arizona.
The deaths of three people and illness in 200 others because of an E.coli outbreak in California spinach in 2006 shook the fresh produce industry.
Since then, farmers in Arizona and California, the two states producing almost all of the nation's leafy greens, have worked to develop new approaches to food safety.
Evidence of the work is visible in a romaine lettuce field in Yuma, where 20 workers emerge from the field and take turns washing their hands.
Medjool dates are among the largest, softest and sweetest in the world. And they are the primary date grown in California's Bard Valley and in neighboring Yuma, Arizona. The combined region produces about 30 million pounds of dates annually—99 percent of them Medjools—with an estimated value of $40 million.