Some grape growers are having to make some tough decisions about vineyards with burning restrictions coming into effect. Last year, the California Air Resources Board voted to phase out agricultural burning in the San Joaquin Valley by January 1, 2025. Manager of Central Valley Operations for Allied Grape Growers, Karl Lehman said the ban is having a significant impact on growers’ decisions for their vineyards.
“We’re seeing some growers pull out a little bit ahead of time prior to when they would just so that way they can burn because the vines are grown into the wire which limits the ability to shred it. But then more importantly you’ve got vineyard trunks wrapped around stakes, you’ve got cordons grown around cross arms,” Lehman noted. “When it becomes uneconomical to farm then it becomes unviable. So, then what do you do at that point? You just don’t farm anymore on that piece of dirt? I mean it’s kind of put some growers in a tough position.”
Listen to the radio report below.