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Showing posts from July, 2020

Weekly Fruit Update - 7/30/2020

In this week's update: Apple disease symptoms to watch for Reducing fruit drop in apples Vineyard management from veraison to harvest End of strawberry renovation window Apple disease symptoms to watch for As you walk the apple orchard this time of year, look for signs of key diseases on your trees. This helps predict what percentage of marketable yield to expect, evaluate how well your disease management program has worked, and implement any late season disease control measures if necessary. See the Midwest Fruit Pest Management Guide for summer cover spray recommendations. Here are some photos of key disease symptoms to look for this time of year: Apple Scab lesions on fruit. These will vary in size as the disease progresses. Apple scab levels are low in 2020 due to dry weather the first half of June.  Apple scab (black/olive green) and Cedar apple rust (orange) on an apple leaf. Smaller scab lesions can be hard to spot. If having difficulty distinguishing scab

Weekly Vegetable Update 7/30/2020

Author: Natalie Hoidal, UMN Extension Educator, Local Foods and Vegetable Production After weeks of intense heat, we finally had some respite. Most growers took full advantage of this week to catch up on harvesting, weeding, and other tasks. We have reached peak summer; tomatoes and peppers are producing in full, and melons are starting to come in. Compared to previous years, we are about two weeks ahead. Crop report Tomatoes and peppers: Production is ramping up, and most farmers are now harveting tomatoes and peppers regularly. The hot peppers we anticipated harvesting in mid to late August are fully mature already as far north as Long Prairie! We've received a lot of calls and emails about blossom end rot.  Cole crops:  I've been seeing much more normal looking broccoli this week. Flea beetles continue to be an issue for some farmers, as do our standard caterpillar insects. Disease pressure is substantially reduced this year compared to previous years. I did get some

FSMA Update - Signage and Labeling Requirements for "Qualified Exempt" Farms

Annalisa Hultberg, Extension Educator, Food Safety If your farm is eligible for an exemption from the FSMA Produce Safety Rule based on where you sell your food and how much you sell, it is not subject to routine inspections or the majority of provisions of the rule. However your farms might have labeling, signage, and recordkeeping requirements that went into effect January 1, 2020. Read more about those requirements here.  Farm Status Categories for the FSMA Produce Safety Rule Three categories your farm can fall under for the FSMA Produce Safety Rule Basically, if your farm is in the middle category, your farm is eligible for an exemption from the FMSA Produce Safety Rule.  How do you know if your farm is in the middle "qualified exempt" category? If your farm had between $27,528 and $550,551 (these figures are adjusted for inflation and change each year) in food sales per year, averaged over the past three years AND more than 50% of those sales were to a ‘qualified end us