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Million Dollar Grant To Aid in Pesticide Research

Neemah Yamin considers himself a healthy eater and said he only buys organic fruits and vegtables that are locally grown.

“I prefer my strawberries flash frozen,” said Yamin. “If they’re purchased from a store, they’re most likely from another country.

Yamin added that if produce is imported from other countries, the nutrient quality is likely to go down, that is why he said he was glad to hear about a new grant awarded to the California Strawberry Commission.

The grant funding will total $1 million dollars, and will be focused on research to reduce the need for soil fumigation.

“Anytime you’re using a pesticide or herbicide its a poison it kills something,” said Glenn Johnson.

Johnson is a local grower and attends Farmer’s Markets regularly to sell his produce.

“You’re bound to get some residue of that in the soil no matter what you do,” Johnson said.

He also explained that investing in healthier soil for crops is essential.

“Anything that would help would be great, especially in an area here where you have organic and conventionally grown berries,” said Johnson. “I think it would be a great location if they could get some of the grant money funded into the Santa Maria Valley.

The funding will come from two different sources; The US Department of Agriculture, and the California Environmental Protection Agency’s Department of Pesticide Regulation.

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