The Almond Board of California (ABC) has invested $5.9 million into 85 independent research projects that explore next-generation farming practices, in an effort to ensure a more sustainable future.
This recent investment brings the California almond community’s research investment to a total of $89 million since 1973, with the aim of building a foundation of knowledge on responsible farming practices, food quality and safety, and almonds’ impact on human health.
As part of its research commitment, ABC launched Almond Orchard 2025 Goals in January earlier this year and Almond Orchard 2025 Goals Roadmap on 10 December 2019. Both focus on its sustainability journey with the goal of growing almonds in better, safer and healthier ways.
Holly King, chair of ABC said: “The Almond Orchard 2025 Goals build on decades of progress, fuelled by research. Fulfilling these commitments will require hard work, dedication and resources, including funding independent research to test new technologies and sharing the results as these approaches are proven.”
The non-profit organisation has invested $678,000 in ten water research projects this year, totalling to $8.1 million since 1982, with a focus on irrigation efficiency, groundwater recharge and water quality.
According to ABC, this investment has helped reduce the amount of water needed to grow each pound of almonds by 33% over the past 20 years. By 2025, ABC has committed to reduce this amount by an additional 20%.
This year, ABC has funded 13 studies with $607,000 to determine how almond co-products may be utilised in other sectors. By 2025, ABC commits to achieving zero waste in orchards by putting everything grown to optimal use.
Finally, ABC has made significant investments in the areas of nutrient management, air quality and honey bee health. This year, the organisation made a total investment of $336,000 into honey bee health research projects.
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2019