• Updated

There's no denying for Tulare County and the San Joaquin Valley to overcome the COVID-19 pandemic, what's being done in agricultural will play a huge role.

We're always interested in hearing about news in our community. Let us know what's going on!

The fight between the state and federal government over the use of the Delta River has basically stalled how long-term water deliveries from that vital source will be executed.

  • Updated

Governor Gavin Newsom announced a new effort during his press conference on Friday to protect essential workers in the state, including California's 625,000 agriculture and farmworkers.

Democratic members of Congress in California and Arizona are calling for U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Sonny Purdue to extend coronavirus relief programs to cotton growers in California and throughout the Southwestern United States.

Hayley Tharp, of Porterville, is a new junior member of the American Angus Association, reports Mark McCully, CEO of the national organization with headquarters in Saint Joseph, Mo..

  • Updated

The COVID-19 pandemic has hit the agricultural industry hard just like everyone else, but a couple of developments last week will certainly be helpful to those in agriculture.

  • Updated

The final weigh-ins for the Bid for the Kid livestock sale took place on Saturday morning at the Porterville Fairgrounds barn, where there was a long line of trucks waiting even before the 9 a.m start time hit.

The Tulare County Sheriff’s Office recognizes these are times of prolonged isolation, making it important for people to get outside and enjoy the sunshine. That being said, TCSO wants to make sure they’re doing it without interfering in the day to day operations of the agricultural industry.


All four Miller children — senior Abigale, sophomore Kaydence, eighth-grader Isabelle and fourth-grader Elijah — are part of the Pleasant View 4-H Club and were planning to show their hogs and goats at the Porterville Fair in May, until it was canceled on March 25 because of the coronavirus pandemic.

One element of the fair remains with the Save our Sale and Bid for the Kid allowing 4-H and FFA exhibitors to receive add-ons or sell one animal each. Buyer information must be received by 4 p.m. or postmarked Friday, May 1, for purchase or add-ons to sale animals, according to the Porterville Fair website. Visit portervillefair.com for more information. 


EDITOR'S NOTE: All animals listed in this story with tag numbers available for purchase through the Porterville Fair's Save our Sale and Bid for the Kid. Buyers have until 4 p.m. on Friday, May 1, to submit purchase or add-on forms.

Trinity Avila hates raising hogs. She has three lambs: Shelton (7619), Blake and Gwen. 

Her big brother, Tyler Avila, strongly dislikes lambs. He has three hogs: Johnny (778), Calvin and Klein.

But with six animals and busy athletic schedules for both siblings; the brother and sister, their parents and grandparents come together to take care of all the animals, regardless of if they like one species a lot more than the other.


Hailey Henschel knows these are her last few days with her pig, Banks (797).

The two are close and it’s obvious in the way they interact. Whether they’re separated by the bars of Banks’ pen or side-by-side in open area at the Strathmore High School farm, one thing is certain — Banks loves Henschel and Henschel loves Banks. 

But their time is short and Henschel is selling her swine project through the Porterville Fair’s Save our Sale and Bid for the Kid livestock sale. Buyers and those wanting to donate via add-on must submit their paperwork by Friday, May 1. Visit portervillefair.com for more information.


Thirteen-year olds, Cameron Shelton and Hailey Carothers, were planning to make the most of the Porterville Fair this year and raised new species to show and sell at the fair, but the coronavirus pandemic and stay-at-home orders shut down their plans. 


Once stay-at-home orders began going out in response to the coronavirus pandemic mid-March, Elizabeth Steenbergen knew there was a chance she wouldn’t be able to sell her hog, Wild (1018).

“When businesses and other places started closing down I was worried about being able to sell him at the fair,” Steenbergen said in an email. “We invested a lot of money into my hog and we were hoping to sell him and break even or make a little bit of profit off of him.”

Thankfully, Steenbergen still has an opportunity to sell her hog through the Porterville Fair’s Save our Sale and Bid for the Kid. Buyers can purchase or donate through add-ons for any animal or exhibitor by Friday, May 1. Visit portervillefair.com for more information.

featured top story

The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced a $19 billion Coronavirus Food Assistance program to assist farmers and ranchers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The $2 trillion stimulus package signed into law by President Trump on Friday includes $48.9 billion for the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Food and Drug Administration.

As expected because it’s been classified as an abnormally dry year so far, area farmers will be receive less water when it comes to their initial water allocations.

Groundwater sustainability plans have been submitted to the state and are now online at the Department of Water Resources’ SGMA Portal, SGMA.water.ca.gov/GSPcomments for public review.

featured top story

California Citrus Mutual officials and those from other fresh produce industries were in Washington D.C. recently to express their concerns over such issues trade, the budget, and the workforce in the fresh produce industry.

Dairy farm families and cows have long been part of Tulare County life. The area remains the nation’s leading county in dairy production.

Two bills sponsored by U.S. Representative T.J. Cox-D to help this area with its water situation has cleared a huge hurdle.

featured top story
  • Updated

Driving along rural highways to get to the World Ag Expo on Wednesday, February 12, was a thrill. Abundant crops in neat checkerboard fields were thrilling to see, and bee boxes were set out in the almond and walnut orchards that lined the roadway intermittently.

featured top story

TULARE — Traditionally the Farmer’s Almanac predicts rainy weather during early to middle February said Lt. Boatman from the Tulare Police Department, who was helping on the first day of the 2020 World Ag Expo on Tuesday, at the International Agri-Center in Tulare. 

The Central Valley is home to the largest concentration of dairies in California. The region suffers from widespread groundwater contamination, poor air quality, heavy truck traffic, high rates of asthma and other chronic and acute health conditions.

The world’s largest agricultural show is just one week away.

The Tulare County Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO) will host a meeting today in the Tulare County Board of Supervisors Chambers in Visalia, and on its agenda is two items concerning the Lindsay-Strathmore Irrigation District (LSID).

featured top story

The Porterville Unified School District has provided information on its Facebook page about the $33.4 million bond that will be placed on the March 3 ballot during the primary election for voters in the district to consider.

featured top story
  • Updated

Despite the frigid temperatures over the weekend, the 32nd annual Sierra Winter Classic cattle show kicked off on Saturday morning at the Porterville Fairgrounds. 

PIXLEY – Calgren Dairy Fuels and Southern California Gas Co. today announced four additional Central Valley dairies have started sending methane produced from cow manure to Calgren’s biogas operation in Pixley, where it’s processed into renewable natural gas (RNG) and injected into SoCalGas’…

The first question asked at the Eastern Tule Groundwater Sustainability Agency Board meeting on Friday represented the frustration of growers who are still facing the unknown.

The Ag industry saw many changes over the course of the last decade. Despite the drought, which lasted a few years, and the discovery of many Psyllids in the citrus groves, overall ag has been booming in the area. Here’s a look at some major stories that made headlines over the past 10 years.

This area is known for its citrus production — it’s known as the Orange Belt after all — so it would make since a citrus judging contest for students would be held here.

The federal government is giving the Central Valley some early Christmas presents through two pieces of legislation — one that became law and the other that’s expected to become law – that will help this area and agriculture.

The Porterville Fair Heritage Association held its annual Roundup Dinner a the Porterville Fairgrounds on Saturday, with a different twist this year as a Ranch Sorting Competition was held in which 23 teams moved 10 head of cattle within a 75 second time limit. 

The East Tule Groundwater Sustainability Water Agency is racing the clock when it comes to meeting the state’s requirements by next year but the message is this:

TULARE — Rosa Brothers Milk Company will mark its seventh year with an anniversary celebration on Saturday, September 28, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at the Rosa Brothers Milk Company Creamery Store located at 2400 South K Street, Tulare. 

On Monday, Southern California Gas Co. (SoCalGas)  joined Calgren Dairy Fuels, and state and local elected officials to announce the completion of Calgren’s dairy renewable natural gas facility. 

Expressing appreciation for the Trump administration’s broadened programs to ease the impact of retaliatory trade actions on American farmers, the president of the California Farm Bureau Federation reiterated the need to resolve the disputes at the root of the issue.

CFBF President Jamie Johansson was in Washington, D.C., today when the administration announced the tariff-assistance package.


Antique Farm Equipment Show steals hearts, brings memories

People came from all over the United States for a walk down memory lane at the 27th annual California Antique Farm Equipment show at the International Agri-Center in Tulare, which began Friday and runs through the weekend.

Walter Watte is the show chairman, and he said there is an antique tractor and truck parade on both Saturday and Sunday, and a special steak dinner fundraiser. Watte is featuring his Uncle George Watt’s 1947 two-cylinder John Deere in the show, but invited all makes and models. George was one of the show founder’s in 1993.


Pleasant View students apply technology in a handy way with H2O on the GO project

An ag technology project that started as a simple sensor to detect moisture in the soil for farmers became something else when eighth grade students at Pleasant View Elementary met with cowboys at Merritt Ranch in Strathmore and found out what they had to do to take care of the cattle and check the water levels daily on the huge ranch.

In charge of the project is Vahid Motazedian, Director of Rural Community and Research Initiatives for the Foundation for the Application of Science. (FAS)

Join the California Antique Farm Equipment Show (CAFES) this weekend, Friday through Sunday, as they celebrate John Deere and “Those Poppin’ Johnny 2-Cylinder tractors” with lots of fun for the whole family at the International Agri-Center in Tulare.

This year, the CAFES have joined with Rusty Roots Show, LLC. to bring more antiques, vintage junk, re-purposed, clever up-cycled, artisan, crafts, new and old, food, and so much more.

Looking to strengthen the market for California-grown olives, Musco Family Olive Company announced Tuesday it is offering new contracts to growers impacted by the recent decision of a competitor to cancel its contracts with California farmers.