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Bagrada Bug News #3 Reports on Role of Weeds and Parasitoid Research

The third edition of the Bagrada Bug News is now available to read and print on demand.

This edition reports on work being conducted in California and France to test promising natural enemies of bagrada bug. Scientists collected three species of wasps that lay their eggs in bagrada bug eggs, thus killing the nymphs inside, in South Africa and Pakistan and are now assessing their potential for release as natural predators of bagrada bug in California.

Bagrada Bug News #4 Available for Free Download

The fourth issue of Bagrada Bug News, a free newsletter dedicated to developing organic management strategies and biocontrol of the bagrada bug, is now available online.

Bagrada bug, Bagrada hilaris, is an invasive stinkbug that first appeared in California in 2008. A prolific breeder with few organic control options, the pest has caused significant economic losses for organic growers, particularly in brassica crops such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and other mustard family members.

Bill to Expand Overtime Pay for California’s Farm Workers

AB 1066, the Phase-in Overtime for Agricultural Workers Act of 2016, is a bill authored by Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego) that would set new overtime pay requirements for California farm workers.

California Farmers and Ranchers Must Comply with Water Quality Regulations

Farmers and ranchers in California must submit water test results and develop nutrient management plans for their landholdings under the Irrigated Lands Regulatory Program.

California Fertilizer Regulations Are Topic of Public Hearing and Comment Opportunity

The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) is holding a hearing on July 5, 2016, in Sacramento on proposed changes to the law that regulates fertilizer production and sales in California.

CDFA is also accepting comments on these proposed changes through June 27, 2016.

Proposed changes include:

California Organic Advisory Committee to Meet September 7

The California Organic Products Advisory Committee (COPAC) will meet this Wednesday, September 7, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. in Sacramento, California.

COPAC advises the California Secretary of Food and Agriculture on organic-related issues. The public is welcome to attend.

Items on the meeting agenda include:

California Organic Food and Farming Act Moves Forward

CCOF-sponsored AB 1826—the California Organic Food and Farming Act (COFFA), authored by Assemblymember Mark Stone (D-Monterey Bay)—passed the California Assembly Agriculture Committee in a unanimous, bipartisan vote in favor of reducing fee and paperwork burdens on California’s organic producers.

California Organic Food and Farming Act – Track the Progress!

Track the progress of the AB 1826—California Organic Food and Farming Act, AB 1826—and read the current bill language.

AB 1826 is CCOF-sponsored legislation that was introduced by California Assemblymember Mark Stone (D-Monterey Bay) in February. The bill is currently in the California Senate Appropriations Committee, where it is scheduled to be heard August 1.

AB 1826 will:

California State Ag Board Seeks Public Input on Agriculture’s Future

The California State Board of Food and Agriculture is now updating its strategic plan, Ag Vision, developed eight years ago for the state’s agriculture and food systems.

An online survey is gathering public input into the plan through August 26. We encourage the organic community to participate in the survey so that the organic perspective is well-represented in the findings. Share your thoughts and take the survey!

California’s Groundwater Law Empowers Regional Management Groups

In the wake of 2014’s Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA), counties, water management districts, and other water agencies around the state are organizing regional groups to formulate plans by the year 2020 that will guide groundwater management with the goal of achieving sustainable use by the year 2040.

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