Almond harvest

Almonds in their hulls wait to be processed Tuesday at the Crown Nut Co. on Chrisman Road in 2017.

Hardly surprisingly, almonds became the highest-valued crop in the county in 2018.

That was made official this week with the publishing of the annual San Joaquin County Annual Crop Report.

The report, the work of the county agricultural commissioner’s office, showed almonds producing $536,396,000 in gross revenue in 2018, surpassing the second-place crop, grapes, at $430,492,000.

Those two crops topped the countywide total 2018 revenue of $2.6 billion, an increase of 2.62% from 2017, according to the county’s ag commissioner, Tim Pelican.

As young almond trees continue coming into production, the dominant position of almonds should continue in the county.

Any drive through rural areas surrounding Tracy provides ample evidence of almonds’ growing leadership in acreage and revenue.

According to the Almond Board of California, the state supplies 82% of the almonds in the world, despite tariffs tacked on exports to China and India by the Trump Administration’s trade battles.

Almond tariffs have little impact so far on Tracy farming operations

This year’s almond crop in California was initially pegged at 2.5 billion pounds, but after the full impact of continuing spring rains on nut set during pollination season, that estimate has been reduced to 2.2 billion pounds.

Local almond growers trying to weather the rain

In presenting crop figures for 2018, here’s how Pelican describes the leading crops in the county:

• Fruit and nut crops in total saw a gain of $41,237,000 in value from 2017 — an increase of 3.03% — with a total value of $1,403,768,000.

• Almonds took the first place with a total value of $536,396,000.

• Grapes were the No. 2 crop with a total value of $430,492,000.

• Livestock and poultry products increased by 8.69%, valued at $467,289,000 due to a large increase in egg production and price per dozen.

• Nursery products increased by 2.31%, totaling $120,004,000.

• Apiary products had the largest increase, 23.97%, with a total value of $32,910,000.

Contact the Tracy Press at tpnews@tracypress.com or 835-3030.

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