March 5th, 2014
This January has been one of the worst on record for California with no recorded rainfall, period. The implications of this are serious; both to communities who rely on water reservoirs to supply their homes with drinking water and to farmers whose livelihood depends on a healthy harvest. As rice is a water crop, Californian rice farmers are among the first to be rationed and have been allowed just enough water to utilize roughly 33% of available rice growing acreage. This has drastically affected the previously anticipated rice supply and capability of the farmers to meet the demands of a hungry international market. In response to the supply shortage and unchanged demand, rice prices have skyrocketed as farmers struggle to cover the cost of their farmland and operational expenses. Raw costs have increased by roughly 70% in less than two months. As the ripples of this drought move through the supply chain, rice suppliers have had no choice but to raise prices on five occasions in January alone. As a result of these unfortunate circumstances, we also have to reluctantly respond by passing on the expense and raising our prices. We appreciate our business partner relationships and thank you for your understanding.
NBC News Reports:
“A state of emergency in California which is going to effect 25 million people - nothing like this has ever happened before.”
“Los Angeles had no measurable rain for the month of January. Only 1 of 5 Januarys since 1878.”
“Right now in California we’re experiencing a drought that no living person in the state or in this country has experienced before in terms of its severity.”
“Experts say that even if we got heavy rain and snow every other day from January til May California would still be in serious trouble.”
This is “perhaps the worst drought California has ever seen since records began being kept about 100 years ago,” said Governor Jerry Brown.”