Fire damage on crops is `cataclysmic’

first_img 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.“This situation here is the worst I’ve seen in terms of impact on individuals, families, homes, businesses,” said Charley Wolk, who’s been farming in San Diego County for 35 years, and now manages hundreds of acres of mostly avocados, citrus and flowers. In San Diego County, where flames continue to eat into the dry, rolling terrain, the crop losses are greatest. County agriculture officials expect damage to dozens of commodities, from eggs to oranges, in the approximately 11,212 farm acres overcome by fire – enough to put a big dent into an industry that contributes about $1.4 billion yearly to the local economy. “It’s looking cataclysmic at the moment,” said Eric Larson, head of the county Farm Bureau. Avocados may be the biggest hit. California harvests nearly all domestically grown avocados, with San Diego County’s production leading the state. By Juliana Barbassa THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Wind-driven wildfires torching Southern California have charred fruit orchards, wilted flowers and littered the ground with avocados, delivering a devastating blow to area farmers already reeling from a deep winter freeze and the long drought that followed. The final damage for growers won’t be known until they’re allowed to return to their lands, but some estimate losses in the millions. last_img read more