Pesticide controversies continue in Carpinteria between avocado farmers and marijuana growers

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Scott van der Kar is a long-time avocado farmer in Carpenteria. Photo credit: Carolina Starin/KCRW

Avocado farmers in Carpinteria neighboring cannabis growers are facing serious pest control issues this season.

May is usually the month that many avocado farmers spray their trees with pesticides - both organic and synthetic. But this year, the companies that apply those pest controls refused to do so. They worry that if there is any unintended drift onto a cannabis crop, the applicators will be subject to lawsuits from cannabis growers.

Because of their medicinal characteristics, cannabis crops are subject to more regulation than more traditional food crops and even minute amounts of contamination could be a problem.


Carpinteria avocado farmer, Scott van der Kar, scans his avocado harvest for defects. Photo credit: Carolina Starin.
Credits

Guests:
Melinda Burns - freelance reporter, Scott van der Kar - Avocado grower, Carpinteria

Host:
Jonathan Bastian

Producer:
Carolina Starin