In March, our nation and state celebrated World Water Day and National Agriculture Week. While this vital California industry is worthy of celebration for being the principal food basket for our world, we must not ignore the challenges it is up against.
California food producers face a severe trade imbalance where ship carriers are being paid exorbitant amounts to take empty containers to China for their exports while leaving our American grown goods on the dock to rot. They also face increased regulations and fees, along with skyrocketing costs of fertilizer, labor, and water.
Threatening American Made Reputation
In 2021, CNBC reported that shipping carriers refused to take 178,000 agricultural export containers worth $632 million during October and November from the ports of Long Beach, Los Angeles, New York, and New Jersey. Instead of carrying American made goods, the shipping carriers sent empty containers to China to be filled with Chinese exports.
The value of American made products is being eroded, the relationship that has taken decades to create is being threatened. And it’s happening because container shipping lines are not following maritime shipping rules. These ghost containers are an insult to American agriculture and business, and unless these discriminatory practices end soon, American made products will get replaced on store shelves worldwide.
Another Water Fiasco and More Excuses
Historical records show California is a land where droughts and floods are routine. The only normal aspect of precipitation in California is that there is no normal.
From Governor Gavin Newsom on down, California Democrats now claim that climate change is responsible for everything from droughts, floods, and wildfires to hot summer days. They claim they’re using the powers of the state government to prepare for climate change and point to climate change as their reason for regulating energy production, land use, the state’s economy, and so on.
For years, this same crowd has predicted climate change will make California hotter and drier and will diminish the annual snowpack. So how is it that when the population of California doubled since the 1960s, we have not enlarged nor significantly added to our ability to capture and store more water?
Our state has chosen the wrong strategy when it comes to water. Instead of increasing the water supply through new storage and coping with the predicted climate change shortages, the response has been to restrict water use while charging us more to “encourage” conservation. This is not the path of a confident state.
The United States and the world cannot replace California’s agricultural bounty. No other region matches its variety in climates, soils, and growing conditions. It’s a blessed land but even with all its natural advantages, it can’t withstand endless political attacks. Farmers and ranchers need support to continue the legacy that supports so much of this state and feeds the world.
California farmers are some of the most resilient and hard-working people you will ever meet. Despite whatever Mother Nature throws at them, our state leaders should find ways to aid our food producers, help them get through the drought years and fix the current trade imbalance.
- Will Taxpayers be Robbed (Again) in 2022? - May 25, 2022
- California’s Ag Community Problems Should Be Everyone’s Concern - May 24, 2022
- COVID-T Variant Looks Deadly to California Freedom - April 6, 2022