Helping Growers Manage Risk

By Tim Hammerich, with the Ag Information Network

Scientists project climate change will significantly alter the way our food is produced, but what can farmers do about this today? Especially when making decisions such as planting perennial crops that will be in place for decades?

Tapan Pathak is a UCANR Cooperative Extension Specialist based at UC Merced. He is working to develop a tool to translate weather and climate data into management insights for growers.

“It’s a huge effort because we want to be really crop-specific in terms of what type of decisions for we can provide to growers. And so, we’re just getting started on developing this crop-specifically, region-specific tools and the website is going to be Cal Agro Climate,” Pathak noted.

Pathak says they are currently finalizing a prototype in order to share with growers for feedback.

“Since we want to make it a very grower friendly, our next planning is to involve some of the growers and advisory committee to provide some feedback and kind of incorporate their changes. So we are hoping to get those tools up and running by next year or so,” said Pathak.

Once completed, the Cal Agro Climate tool will be able to help farmers reduce weather and climate related risk on their farms.