Innovations in Sustainable Almond Farming
If you’re a regular reader, you know that here at Tucker&Co we source our almonds from Mandelin Almonds of San Luis Obispo, CA. We started using their almonds because we knew we wanted to buy directly from a farm, and their unique and sustainable farming techniques excited us. They also made us curious about all of the recent groundbreaking moves toward sustainability in the almond farming community.
One of the more significant steps towards sustainability that many almond farmers have taken is the minimization of their water usage. Farmers have reduced the amount of water needed to grow each almond by 33 percent between the 1990s and 2010s and are committed to another 20 percent by 2025. They do this mainly through microirrigation, where farmers will apply water directly to the trees’ roots rather than across the field, and it has been proven over time to conserve water and even increase their harvest.
Many almond farmers have also made a commitment to zero waste, meaning they use everything they grow in some form or another. With almond farming, this looks like utilizing the hulls, shells and trees as well as the almonds themselves. The trees remove carbon dioxide from the air and at the end of their lives, they are mulched back into the land to create healthier soils and help fight climate change. The hulls become livestock feed, offsetting the need to grow other crops, and the shells are used as livestock bedding.
These are only a few of the amazing steps that the almond farming community is making towards a more sustainable future! If you want to know more, check out Growing Almonds | Sustainable Growth Starts Here.