I read with interest the comments made in the Guest View by Mike McCarthy; California is right up there with Oregon as an extremely costly state for farming.
In 2018 our organization commissioned a study by CalPoly San Luis Obispo to determine the increase in regulatory costs to lettuce farmers of the Central Coast of California. The resulting study, “A Decade of Change: A Case Study of Regulatory Compliance Costs in the Produce Industry” concluded that regulatory compliance costs increased 795% in the decade since 2008. Reviewed were areas such as regulatory requirements for air quality, water quality, pesticide use, food safety, workers’ compensation, Affordable Care Act, labor and wages, and education and training for regulatory compliance.
While the same study determined that the costs of crop production only increased by 24.8% in the same decade, the policy makers in our state have largely ignored the impacts and costs of regulatory compliance as new and ever-more-harsh requirements are laid upon growers each year; regulators have chosen to ignore this study on regulatory compliance costs as well.
We, too, want to keep farming, and I fear for our small farmers who cannot keep pace with the costs of regulatory compliance.
Monterey County Farm Bureau