CFWC radio: Water that grows farm products doesn’t stay on the farm

Water that grows farm products doesn’t stay on the farm.

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Plants need three things to grow: sunlight, soil…and water. Farmers depend on all three to grow hundreds of different crops right here in California. There’s no shortage of sunlight and soil… but four years of drought has caused deep cuts in the water farmers need to grow our food.

This year almost one in three acres of California’s irrigated farmland will receive no surface water at all. None.

Consumers and farmers alike are feeling the effects of the drought.

That’s important to all of us because farmers grow the food that ends up at the grocery store. Simply put, the water that farmers use to grow our food is water that we all consume in the food we eat.

Getting through the drought won’t be easy and we’re all in it together. California’s farmers are going to be working hard to make the most of the sunlight, soil… and the water they have, to continue producing the fresh California farm products we want for our families.

According to data from the California Department of Water Resources and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, California farmers actually use LESS water than the amount required to meet all of California’s food supply needs.

California drought affects farms and consumers

Farmers and consumers share a unique relationship. The California drought is helping people understand how important it is for farms to have the water they need to grow the food we all find at the grocery store. Serious water supply cuts affect our food supply as well as the people in rural communities who depend on agriculture for their jobs.


I Heard it on the Radio

From California Farms to Your Table

We enjoy a bounty of fresh fruits, vegetables and nuts grown on California farms – farms that produce about half of the fresh food in the U.S.  But food only grows where water flows.  California’s aging water system has put our economy, farmers and fresh food production at risk.  Help California farmers continue to feed families and keep our state’s economy strong by supporting solutions for a more reliable water supply.



Buy Local and Put Money in Your Pocket

American consumers benefit financially from irrigated agriculture.  In the U.S., consumers spend just 6.2 percent of their disposable income on food and non-alcoholic beverages compared to 10.2 percent on average in 28 other high-income countries.

To the average American family this represents a savings $3,820 each year in comparison to food costs paid by families in other countries.

As consumers we have choices on where we spend our money.  Efficient farming practices have helped keep food costs low while providing hundreds of healthful and affordable farm products at the grocery store.  Lower food costs means money that would otherwise be spent to feed our families can instead be used to enrich our lives through recreation, music, philanthropy and even ballet lessons.

ballet girl


Innovation = Lower Food Costs

From north to south, California farmers use innovative practices to boost water use efficiency. Over time, improvements in the way water is stored and delivered allows farmers to grow more food while using less water.  That stretches resources and helps keep costs low for consumers.

From 2003 through 2013 San Joaquin Valley farmers invested about $3 billion upgrading their irrigation systems on 2.5 million acres of farmland.  That investment circulates through the economy by creating jobs and economic benefits for on-farm and farm-related businesses.


Food Safety is Our Highest Priority

Consumers trust California farm products because they’re grown under the most stringent regulations governing pesticide use, health and safety, and worker protections.  Wages often exceed State and federal minimum standards.  It is comforting to know that the food we provide our families comes from families just like ours – produced by farmers who care about the environment; about food safety; and about the people working to bring the crops to market.


Farmers Need This To Grow Our Food

What is it?  Water.

Farmers and consumers share a unique relationship. Many of the same sources of water meet the domestic needs of millions of Californians as well as the irrigation needs of the farmers who grow our food. And without California’s local farms, we would have a greater dependence on foreign food sources along with uncertain farm practices that can affect food safety.

California is home to one of only five Mediterranean climates on earth. Our cold, wet winters and hot, dry summers provide perfect growing conditions for over 400 crops. The three things necessary for plant growth are sunshine, soil and water and California has them all. Moving water from the wet, northern part of the state to the dry central and southern regions makes it possible for farmers to grow delicious fresh fruits, nuts, vegetables and many other crops. It would be difficult to grow the abundant produce that goes into a salad if farmers had to depend on just the local, natural rainfall to water their fields. By capturing water in the winter and storing it in a reservoir, we can save it for the summer when farmers use it to grow the fresh food we all find at the grocery store.


California Drought – Food Supply

California is the 4th largest supplier of food to the world and the #1 largest supplier of food to the entire United States.

During the 2014 California Drought farmers don’t always have the water they need to grow the food we buy at the grocery store, but there are proposed solutions on the November ballot.

>>> Learn More

California Drought – Invest

People everywhere need water. Farmers use water to grow the food we buy at the grocery store. But we need to invest in our water supply system to make sure we have enough water today and in the future – for drinking, for cooking and cleaning, and for growing healthy and delicious food.

CFWC 2013 Radio Spot

CFWC 2013 radio advertisement: The California Farm Water Coalition’s outreach activities in 2013 included ads that ran on major Los Angeles-area radio stations KNX and KFWB over the course of five weeks.

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Kevin and Allison Hurd

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Family farms like ours provide food that is safe, healthy and affordable, and it doesn’t travel halfway around the world to get to your table. Adequate and dependable water supplies for California farms keep fresh, safe, and healthy food on your plate.

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Jeff Boldt Family Farm

boldt family farm

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We care about our family, our employees & we care about the environment because it’s the right thing to do. Jeff Boldt talks about irrigation & crop production

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