Florida Growers Seeing Uptick in Stink Bug Problems

By Clint Thompson The stink bug has increasingly become problematic for Florida tomato growers. Not only must producers scout regularly to see if there are stink bugs in their fields, but they must also decipher what species is impacting their crops. That’s what makes controlling stink bugs such a challenge, says Amanda Hodges, an Extension scientist at the University of Florida …

Farm Bill Conservation Working Group Meetings Scheduled for Florida

Florida’s Local Working Group (LWG) meeting schedule for Fiscal Year 2023 has been announced by the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS). The NRCS and local Soil and Water Conservation Districts host the LWG meetings, where input and recommendations are discussed to develop solutions using Farm Bill programs. The LWGs provide recommendations to USDA on criteria for conservation activities and programs, and they focus …

Entomologist on the Trail of Invasive Species

The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) has appointed internationally acclaimed entomologist and ecologist Matthew Thomas as director of the new Invasion Science Research Initiative (ISRI). Thomas will establish the framework for ISRI, which will bring together more than 120 UF/IFAS scientists from more than 20 departments currently dedicated to the detection, diversion, tracking and control of nonnative …

Rubio, Lawson to USTR: “Untenable Situation Imposed by Mexico’s Practices and Policies”

U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Representative Al Lawson (D-FL) led bipartisan members of the Florida congressional delegation to petition U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai to initiate a Section 301 investigation of fruit and vegetable imports from Mexico and to secure trade relief for Florida growers. “The Biden Administration has affirmed its intention to protect and reinvigorate critical supply chains …

Florida Black Spot Quarantine Expanded

Federal and state agriculture officials have expanded the citrus black spot (CBS) quarantine area in Florida. They have added four sections in Collier County and five sections in Glades County. The action was taken by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) in cooperation with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Division of …

2022 Hurricane Season off to Slow Start, but Keep Your Guard Up

By Frank Giles The main hurricane prognosticators both predicted the 2022 season would be above normal. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicted 20 named storms. Colorado State University also predicted an above normal season with 19 named storms. But, so far, this hurricane season has been slow. In fact, for the first time since 1997, the month of August …

Specialty Crop Farm Bill Alliance Lays Out Priorities

The Specialty Crop Farm Bill Alliance (SCFBA), a national coalition of more than 200 specialty crop organizations representing growers of fruits, vegetables, dried fruit, tree nuts, nursery plants and other products, has released its statement of principles for consideration of the 2023 farm bill. The SCFBA was established to advocate for broad-based farm bill policy initiatives to address the unique …