Almonds – September 2015

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Almonds Have Us Feeling Nutty!

We’ve been feeling kind of nutty in anticipation of this year’s almond crop! The Almond harvest is underway at Bella Viva Orchards and great care has been taken to maintain optimal tree health during this dry growing season. We are happy to provide our customers with a variety of almonds including: Raw Almonds, Organic Almonds, Roasted-Salted Almonds. Our Raw Almonds have a natural rich nutty taste, while the Roasted-Salted Almonds are truly a smoky and salty treat. We invite you to come down to store, or buy online, and enjoy the good life.

The almond has been under attack recently as California’s drought continues to become increasingly troublesome. Specifically, the amount of water used by almond farmers is in question. In light of Bella Viva’s current almond harvest, we are here to dispel some of these concerns. In fact, almonds do not require more water than many of California’s crops (NPR). 1.02 million acres (13%) of California’s total 7.9 million acres of irrigated farmland is devoted to almond production. However, almond farmers use only 9% of the state’s agricultural water. In addition, they have increased water efficiency, per pound of almonds, by 33% since the early 1990’s (ABC). Growers also strive to be sustainable by putting every by-product to use. The fuzzy green outer covering, or “hull,” is used for dairy cow feed. The shells are used as livestock bedding and an alternative energy source (ABC).

In recent years researchers have been trying to solve the mysterious decline of the Honey bee. Most almond tree varieties are not self-pollinating and therefore rely on bees to pollinate the flowers that create the nuts. Growers have become part of the solution through research funded by the Almond Board of California. Since 1995, it has invested $1.6 million in: genetic stock improvement, pest and disease management, studying pesticides and how to limit exposure to them, and technical assistance to beekeepers (ABC).

Almond Fun Facts:

  • California produces 100% of the domestic supply of almonds (ABC).
  • 13% of California’s farmland is used to produce almonds (USDA).
  • But almonds require only 9% of the state’s agricultural water (USDA).
  • Since the 1990s water efficiency per pound of almonds has increased by 33% (ABC).
  • Most almond tree varieties are not self-pollinating and therefore require pollination from Honey bees (ABC).

Matthew Muller
Bella Viva Copywriter

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