California citrus industry fights Asian citrus psyllid

The federal shutdown isn't stopping California's citrus industry from keeping up its fight against a potentially devastating citrus pest.

The industry's California Citrus Pest and Disease Prevention Committee is contributing up to $100,000 to help replace federal funding used to battle the Asian citrus psyllid in the central San Joaquin Valley.

The California Department of Food and Agriculture now has a quarantine measuring 86 square miles in the heart of the San Joaquin Valley citrus belt. Additional smaller quarantines are in place in neighboring Fresno and Kern counties.

The psyllid is a major threat to the state's $2 billion citrus industry because of its ability to carry a deadly plant disease known as citrus greening, or huanglongbing.

— Staff and wire reports. Submit items to robert.digitale@pressdemocrat.com

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