Land IQ has continued its work to provide a better understanding of almond production in California through detailed acreage reports. The Almond Board of California (ABC) has been collaborating with Land IQ for more than a decade to map almond acreage in the state. Over the years, more detailed metrics have been measured and included in the acreage reports to provide further clarity of overall almond production.
“The Almond Board wanted to know this year in particular, how many acres of those orchards that still may be standing are abandoned. How many of those orchards that still may be standing, not removed, are stressed?” said Joel Kimmelshue, Principal Soil and Agricultural Scientist for Land IQ. “Now we have refined that mapping to take that part of the standing orchards – the 1.66 million acres in California right now in 2021 – and determine the number that are stressed or abandoned. It’s just more granularly to the data to allow people to make smarter decisions.”
The latest acreage report estimates there were 25,383 acres that were considered stressed and 7,111 acres that were classified as abandoned in the 2021 crop year. There were also 3,769 acres considered to be long-term abandoned, which are orchards that have been abandoned prior to the 2021 water year but have yet been removed.
Kimmelshue explained that they are also working to provide even more detailed metrics in future acreage reports. Work is taking place to include evapotranspiration information into the dataset. Land IQ is also in the process of implementing new technology to better understand the correlation between orchard age, density, and yield.
“We’re beginning some R&D work right now on determining pollinator versus producer rations in almond orchards,” said Kimmelshue. “All of these things are an attempt to improve the accuracy of estimating yield, managing water, those types of things.”
Listen to Kimmelshue’s interview below.