Freeze leaves damage
Published 10:10 am Monday, May 8, 2006
LANSING - Area lawmakers toured Berrien County grape farms Friday to see first-hand damage done to crops from the recent freeze.
The visit was an effort to provide some financial relief to local grape growers and to assess the impact on related industries and the tourism industry.
Sen. Ron Jelinek, Reps. John Proos and Neal Nitz, along with Department of Agriculture Director Mitch Irwin and Rhonda Siebenmark from U.S. Rep. Fred Upton's office met with a dozen area grape growers to evaluate the situation.
The recent frost in Berrien, Cass and Van Buren counties damaged between 90 to 100 percent of the grape crops.
Also on hand May 5 were Ron Nelson and Ken Nye from Farm Bureau, John Jasper and Terry Holloway from the National Grape Cooperative, representatives from Welch's Growers and Carl Kincaid from Greenstone Farm Credit Services.