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Agriculture Day

Agriculture Day

Agriculture Day

On Agriculture Day, we began our journey at the Lodi Wine & Visitors Center, where we were privileged to hear from Joe Valente of Kautz Farms. Joe provided us with an in-depth understanding of the Tracy Lakes water district, explaining its operational mechanics and the associated costs for local farmers. His insights highlighted the critical role of water management in agriculture and its impact on farming sustainability.

Our next stop was Kautz Farms, where we delved into the cultivation of cherries and almonds. We learned about the various agricultural techniques employed to grow these crops, the challenges faced by the farmers, and the innovative solutions they implement to overcome these challenges. The visit provided a comprehensive overview of the labor, technology, and dedication required to produce high-quality cherries and almonds.

After our farm tour, we enjoyed a delightful lunch at the Kautz home, where we had the opportunity to discuss our morning experiences and reflect on the complexities of modern farming. The setting was perfect for informal conversations, enhancing our appreciation of the agricultural community's hospitality and hard work.

Post-lunch, we headed to Bear Creek Winery, where Han Han guided us through the fascinating process of winemaking. Han's explanation covered every step, from the harvesting of grapes to the fermentation and aging processes. This tour not only deepened our understanding of wine production but also allowed us to appreciate the meticulous care and expertise involved in creating fine wines. Our next destination was Calivirgin, where Julie Coldani shared the inspiring history of their family-owned business. Julie recounted the journey of starting Calivirgin and detailed how they produce their renowned almonds. The visit culminated in a tasting session, where we savored a variety of their products. We also had the pleasure of purchasing some of these delectable items from their store, bringing home a piece of the Calivirgin experience.

The final stop of our Agriculture Day was Van Exel Dairy. Hank Van Exel took us on a bus tour of his dairy farm, providing an up-close look at the daily operations and the care provided to the cows. Han's tour was both educational and engaging, shedding light on the dairy industry's practices and the importance of animal welfare in producing quality dairy products.

In summary, Agriculture Day offered a rich tapestry of experiences, from water management and crop production to winemaking and dairy farming. Each stop provided valuable insights into different aspects of agriculture, highlighting the dedication and innovation of local farmers and producers. This immersive journey not only broadened our knowledge but also deepened our appreciation for the agricultural sector's pivotal role in our daily lives.

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