California is usually having trouble with droughts, but now it's getting too much rainfall! I'd guess that the produce growing in that state is in some sort of confusion at this point.
Grubstreet reports that California rainfall this winter measured up to more than 27 inches, which is the most ever recorded. Salad greens are being affected too, so it appear the poor state either suffers from too much or not enough water, but never just the right amount.
The extra rainfall has reportedly kept the bees from being able to pollinate the almond plants, which have a pretty short blooming period. That could mean drowned plants instead of almond harvests. The CEO of Olam, the world's biggest provider of almonds, told the Wall Street Journal that, “Unfortunately I can’t give the bees overtime and ask them to work longer and harder,” reports Grubstreet. I guess the CEO has a point!
The most ironic part about this whole ordeal is that the almonds have been getting a bad rap lately for exactly how much water they really need. They are said to use up to 10 percent of California's water supply, which should allegedly be going to the honeybee and salmon populations.
Slate reports that it takes about a gallon of water to grow a single almond, but that using the water to grow the almond makes more sense for the environment than using the water for dairy. So, while the almond has been vilified as of late, we kind of like having them around. It seems rather crazy that now the problem is that they're drowning! Imagine how much water it would take to drown a plant that already needs a gallon of water to produce one nut. It's, well, nuts!
The unusual new weather patterns in California are also affecting strawberry, celery, artichoke and cauliflower crops. We should be expecting not only availability gaps in some of our major produce items, but also a hike in pricing due to shortages. Oh, what a strange time we are in!