Ingrained

Ingrained

The California Rice Podcast

Episodes

May 15, 2022 16 min
California farmers are no strangers to drought, although the magnitude of this, a third straight dry year, has widespread and significant impacts in Sacramento Valley rice country and nearby communities.

A lack of adequate rain above Shasta Dam has brought historic water cutbacks to growers on the west side of the Sacramento Valley, with a major reduction in rice plantings.  This contrasts the east side of the valley, where r...

Share
Mark as Played

Many travelers heading north on Interstate 5 or Highway 99 only get a fleeting glimpse of the Sacramento Valley. However, those who know this region understand and appreciate how unique and valuable it is.

The Sacramento Valley is an impressive patchwork of farms and communities, living and working in harmony with the environment.

A worsening drought has led to major water cutbacks. Farmers will grow less and the communities with a...

Share
Mark as Played

A third straight drought year poses major challenges for California’s environment, cities and farms. While cooperation, collaboration and innovation are needed in the short term, many feel a major part of the long-term water solution is additional storage.

A remote area on the west side of the Sacramento Valley could be a big part of the solution. Sites Reservoir has been debated for decades, and getting this critical addition t...

Share
Mark as Played

Since fundamental changes were made to the way rice straw is managed following harvest in the early 1990s,  Sacramento Valley rice country has steadily grown as a vital rest and refuel stop for millions of birds.  Local rice fields not only provide habitat for nearly 230 wildlife species, the value of rice fields for the environment is proving to be even greater during drought years, because there is less water on the landscape and...

Share
Mark as Played

For all of the high-tech advancements California is famous for, one part of the state’s infrastructure – providing enough water for its environment, cities and farms – is lacking. It has been more than four decades since the last major water storage facility was built in the Golden State, and our total population has nearly doubled since that time.

Proposed for the west side of the Sacramento Valley, Sites Reservoir provides an opp...

Share
Mark as Played
January 11, 2022 12 min

A generation ago, it may have seemed far-fetched that Sacramento Valley rice fields could play a vital role for millions of birds.  However, changes in rice growing methods in the early 1990s – a shift from burning fields after harvest to adding a few inches of water to break down leftover rice straw - led to just such an occurrence. Area rice fields are now home to nearly 230 wildlife species, including 7 to 10 million ducks and g...

Share
Mark as Played

Winter is approaching, and that will soon translate into the arrival of millions of birds to the rice fields and wildlife refuges in the Sacramento Valley.

For many, including Suzy Crabtree, it’s a magical time. Suzy has visited Gray Lodge Wildlife Area in Butte County thousands of times over the years, to photograph the amazing array of ducks, geese, shorebirds, raptors and other animals there.

“There’s so many things to see there...

Share
Mark as Played
November 2, 2021 13 min

It took longer than normal, but fortunately it is happening. A shallow amount of water is showing up in rice fields throughout the Sacramento Valley – essentially a welcome mat for the 10 million ducks, geese and other wildlife migrating through our area for their annual Pacific Flyway journey.

This year was the driest in a century in California. The water shortage led to about 100,000 fewer acres of rice planted in the Sacrament...

Share
Mark as Played

Water has long been a contentious subject in California.  As the nation’s most populous state, leading the nation in farm production and a state dedicated to environmental protection, it’s easy to understand why.

The severe, ongoing drought only puts a greater focus on water.

While there’s hope for a wet fall and winter, Sacramento Valley water managers and other stakeholders are doing what they can to prepare for all outcomes.

Tea...

Share
Mark as Played

Even during difficult times like we’ve been experiencing, it helps to look for the positive.

In Sacramento Valley rice country – two positives are unfolding. After a difficult year where drought left 20 percent of fields unplanted, harvest of America’s sushi rice is underway and early reports are favorable.

Although acreage is down, initial reports on quality and yields look strong.

“We’re about thirty percent down from the total ...

Share
Mark as Played
July 19, 2021 17 min

What is shaping up as the most significant drought in decades has impacted much of the West.

A lack of adequate rain, sizzling temperatures and a snowpack that all but vanished have led to major cutbacks in surface water deliveries, including to Sacramento Valley rice fields. This year’s rice acreage is about 20 percent lower than normal as a result. 

A massive challenge is fast approaching. There’s a growing concern that t...

Share
Mark as Played
July 1, 2021 15 min

The driest year in decades has been a jolt to much of California. Challenges extend beyond cities and farms, as wildlife is impacted by a sharp drop in habitat.

One saving grace in the Sacramento Valley is the continued creativity and collaboration between rice growers and conservation groups.

Millions of ducks depend on areas rice fields and adjacent wetlands, and there is a concerted effort to help them make it through the drough...

Share
Mark as Played
May 31, 2021 19 min

The driest year California has experienced since the 1970s will have wide-ranging impacts in the West.

In the Sacramento Valley, a reduced water supply will lead to about a 20 percent reduction in rice plantings.

The loss of about 100,000 acres of rice fields has implications well beyond the farm level. The reduced plantings will impact rural communities that depend on agriculture as their foundation. It’s also a concern for wildli...

Share
Mark as Played

The coming weeks will be busy in the Sacramento Valley, as highly-skilled pilots plant this year’s rice crop.

Farmers are no stranger to challenges, and this year is no different. Below-par rain and snowfall have led to water cutbacks of at least 25 percent valley wide, which will lead to an as yet undetermined drop in rice plantings.

“There are a lot of fields that won’t be planted on my farm and throughout the state because of a ...

Share
Mark as Played

Taro Arai has an electric personality. As Chief Dreaming Officer for Mikuni, with nine popular restaurants and sushi bars in Northern California, his enthusiasm and generosity are well known throughout the region.

But it wasn’t an easy road to success. After arriving from Japan, the Arai family opened their first Mikuni restaurant in 1987. Reverend and Mrs. Arai prepared food in the kitchen, while Taro and siblings Noamichi and Kei...

Share
Mark as Played

Tractors are working ground in the Sacramento Valley, as the 2021 rice season is underway.

Whether it’s farmers, those in cities or for the environment, this year will pose challenges due to less than ideal rain and snowfall during the fall and winter.

At Montna Farms near Yuba City, Vice President of Operations Jon Munger said they expect to plant about one-third less rice this year, based on water cutbacks. As water is always a p...

Share
Mark as Played
February 28, 2021 25 min

Sushi is often a high culinary art form and its popularity continues to grow. Since the countries first sushi roll was served in Little Tokyo Los Angeles in the 1960s, is has grown into a multi-billion dollar a year industry. Interest in the cuisine is fueled by creative chefs, who push boundaries and take painstaking steps to ensure the best customer experience.

One example is Billy Ngo, founder, chef and partner of Kru Restaurant...

Share
Mark as Played

Chances are you may never have visited Richvale or even heard of it. This small town south of Chico and west of Oroville in Butte County boasts a population of 244.  This is quintessential rice country, with the community surrounded by rice fields and allied businesses, where many of their streets are named after rice varieties.

It’s also where the Rystrom family has farmed for generations. 

Before Peter took up farming full t...

Share
Mark as Played

It’s a miraculous journey done every year. An estimated 1.2 million snow geese are part of the annual Pacific Flyway migration, traveling thousands of miles as they head south for the fall and winter.

Fortunately, the Sacramento Valley provides just what is needed for these boisterous birds to rest and refuel. Rice fields provide more than 60 percent of the fall and winter diet for these hearty travelers, as well as the flocks of m...

Share
Mark as Played
December 10, 2020 33 min

Insufficient investment in water storage has brought about an almost yearly struggle in California, and another dry start to the rainy season is cause for concern. 

A big part of the solution to inadequate water storage may come a project that has been debated for more than half a century – Sites Reservoir, which would be built in rural Colusa and Glenn Counties. 

Sites Reservoir is the largest surface storage facility proposed to ...

Share
Mark as Played

Popular Podcasts

    Serial is a podcast from Serial Productions, a New York Times company, hosted by Sarah Koenig. Serial unfolds one story - a true story - over the course of a whole season. The show follows the plot and characters wherever they lead, through many surprising twists and turns. Sarah won't know what happens at the end of the story until she gets there, not long before you get there with her. Each week she'll bring you the latest chapter, so it's important to listen in, starting with Episode 1. New episodes are released on Thursday mornings.

    Crime Junkie

    If you can never get enough true crime... Congratulations, you’ve found your people.

    Morbid

    It’s a lighthearted nightmare in here, weirdos! Morbid is a true crime, creepy history and all things spooky podcast hosted by an autopsy technician and a hairstylist. Join us for a heavy dose of research with a dash of comedy thrown in for flavor.

    The Official Game of Thrones Podcast: House of the Dragon

    Welcome to the Official Game of Thrones Podcast: House of the Dragon produced by HBO Max and iHeartRadio. This show is the go-to audio destination to unpack and discuss everything Game of Thrones for casual and die-hard fans alike, starting with the new HBO Original series, House of the Dragon. Join our hosts Jason Concepcion (X-Ray Vision) and Greta Johnsen (WBEZ's Nerdette podcast) every week as they share insights, fan questions, exclusive interviews with the cast and crew, and a whole lot of thoughts and opinions. It’s the only podcast with the inside scoop on all things Game of Thrones. It is also produced in association with Crooked Media.

    Dateline NBC

    Current and classic episodes, featuring compelling true-crime mysteries, powerful documentaries and in-depth investigations.

Advertise With Us

For You

    Music, radio and podcasts, all free. Listen online or download the iHeart App.

    Connect

    © 2022 iHeartMedia, Inc.