11-11 AM Live Ag Report

FRESNO, Calif.

Two Kings County farmers are proposing to sell much of the irrigation water they get from the state to urban developers in southern California.

The two sellers, "3R land and development" and Donald Jackson, grow stone fruit trees and own land within the Dudley Ridge water district.

They want to transfer nearly 2,000 acre-feet of water to Tejon Ranch Company which is planning a development along interstate 5, south of Bakersfield.

Tejon Ranch would pay the farmers over $5,800 per acre-foot.

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California prune growers harvested a smaller crop, with volumes down about 15 percent from a year ago. Farmers say mild summer weather slowed fruit growth.

The California dried plum board says consumers should still see good supplies this year.

The board says shipments of California dried plums have increased about 30 percent in the past year. It calls it a sign that demand and supplies are coming into balance.

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The number of small commercial farms is on the decline. U.S. farm production is shifting to larger operations, which have a competitive advantage over smaller farms because the average cost of production declines as the size of the operation grows.

Western farm press reports, many of the operators of small commercial farms are at least 65 years old and are leaving farming as they grow older.

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