Farm Bureau Article Discusses the Role of Avocado Groves in Fighting Fires
Ag Alert, the weekly newspaper of the California Farm Bureau Federation, recently published a commentary by John Krist, chief executive officer of the Farm Bureau of Ventura County, concerning the role avocado groves and orchards played during the Thomas Fire. Krist, who toured fire-damaged California avocado groves with the California Avocado Commission and California Secretary of Agriculture Karen Ross thanked the “skilled and brave firefighters” who were willing to endanger themselves while protecting others. He then went on to note there was an additional reason specific communities avoided disaster: “a wide buffer of fire-resistant, irrigated avocado and citrus orchards.”
In his piece, Krist acknowledges the efforts of farm employees, managers and owners whose battles to save their livelihood in turn saved residential neighborhoods — detailing their efforts: cutting firebreaks, manning water hoses, damping out spot fires. While neighborhoods abutting orchards and groves fared well during the Thomas Fire, those near brush-covered hillsides did not. He ends by encouraging his readers to “thank a farmworker [and] thank a farmer.”
You can read the entire article online.