All crops are not created equal. Perennial crops, such as cranberries, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, grapes, fruit trees, rhubarb and asparagus, can benefit from different sampling times than traditional annual crops, like corn or soybeans. Are you sampling at perennial growth stages listed below?
Specialty crops are defined as fruits and vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits, and nursery crops (including floriculture).
Specialty Crops represent a significant sector of American agriculture. Overall, specialty crops account for approximately fifty percent of domestic farmgate crop value.
USDA Secretary Mike Johanns, in comments at the Agricultural Forum in February (2006), said:
"The value of specialty crops is now equal to the value of program crops. And they've continued to grow over the last couple of decades."
Specialty crop producers are united like never before to advocate programs in a variety of areas - such as research, conservation and marketing assistance - that can improve our competitiveness in a global marketplace.
Specialty crops play an increasingly important role in the federal government's dietary guidelines for Americans - in the case of fruits and vegetables calling for a doubling of daily consumption.
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