The WRT Approach: Comprehensive, Customized, Accurate & Effective

 For most growers, harvest time signals the pinnacle of a long effort of hard work and financial investment towards a profitable agricultural operation.  It is also the start to the challenge of restoring the soil to optimal nutrient levels for next year’s growing season.  According to research at the University of Minnesota, there are at least 16 essential nutrients for healthy plant growth.  Most of these essential nutrients are absorbed by crops and depleted at varying rates during the growing season which leaves the land lacking critical elements required for healthy crops, come next spring. WRT’s ( successful program prepares farms for healthy profits in the next growing season.

Each crop field has a different nutrient profile. Traditionally, growers use a simple acid test to analyze the nutrient levels without understanding the complete scope of their soil’s post-harvest deficiencies.  In most cases, this leads the grower to add too much fertilizer, rich in one set of nutrients while leaving the soil un-repaired in other nutrient categories.  The result can be poor crop quality and an overall decrease in production.

The comprehensive approach developed by Soil and Agro-Expert, John Witzke, Founder of WRT ( goes much further towards providing each individual grower with their own unique soil analysis.  Going beyond the simple acid test, the WRT approach includes a “saturated paste extract” which is sent to a certified lab for in-depth analysis.  The results of the analysis reveal an exact reading of bicarbonates, chlorides and other essential elements present in the soil so that the grower can accurately address what is needed to restore the soil to full growth potential.

As John Witzke definitively states, “WRT believes the soil is by far the most valuable and most important element of any grower’s operation.  By using the WRT approach to sampling and analysis, the soil will receive only the nutrients it needs, without the risk of over-fertilizing the land with chemicals it doesn’t need.”


Once the soil has been tested and profiled, the additional benefit included in the WRT approach is to test the grower’s water supply. Water is applied in greater quantity than any other input. Not knowing what the water contains can be devastating to crop production


The last step in the WRT approach is the implementation process.  WRT handles each individual grower with an in-person, customized water and soil nutrient management plan.  The results of the lab tests are reviewed and addressed and recommendations for accurate, comprehensive corrections are crafted to suit the particular needs of each grower.  The Agro-Experts at WRT have incorporated a full range of soil renewal products designed by BIO SI, Baicor and the other scientifically tested products into their solution plan.  BIO SI’s product portfolio covers everything from organic soil inoculants that help restore soil naturally and ensure water absorption occurs more efficiently, to a stubble digestion formula that turns left over debris from harvest into reusable nutrients.

Combining the long established expertise and personalized guidance of the WRT approach with BIO SI’s innovative, natural soil rejuvenation products, growers across America’s Agro-industry should be taking advantage of the cutting edge advancements in soil restoration and reap the available benefits of a healthier crop field.  The motto at WRT is to restore life to the soil and nutrition to foods by providing growers customized strategies and sound, sustainable solutions that enhance their own farms, orchards, and cropland.

Report outlines huge impact of California almond industry

The almond industry is generating about 104,000 jobs and adding about $11 billion to the state’s economy this year, according to report released Tuesday.

The report, commissioned by the Modesto-based Almond Board of California, provides a snapshot of an industry that has gone from successful to wildly successful in the past few years.

It projects a record $7.3 billion in income to growers this year, thanks mainly to strong prices from buyers around the world. The total economic impact swells as processing, trucking, farm supplies and other industry inputs are included, along with spending by these companies’ employees on groceries, clothing and other things in the general economy.

“It’s certainly fair to say that where almonds are grown, we create jobs and we create economic value,” said Richard Waycott, the board’s chief executive officer

California grows about 80 percent of the world’s almonds. About a third of the state’s supply comes from Stanislaus, Merced and San Joaquin counties.

The report was compiled by the University of California Agricultural Issues Center, based in Davis. Economist Daniel Sumner, who is a co-author and the center’s director, joined Waycott in a telephone news conference from the Almond Board’s annual convention in Sacramento.

Sumner acknowledged that the report reflects a very good year for the industry, with growers getting an average of $3.48 per pound for their nuts. That price was $2.58 just two years ago.

“One thing we know about agriculture is things go up and down,” Sumner said. But he added that much of the spending by the industry, such as on packaging for almond snacks, is fairly steady even as the price per pound fluctuates.

Sumner also noted that some almond orchards have been irrigated with water shifted from lower-value crops during the drought, which started in 2012 and was especially bad for the 2014 growing season.

“Almonds have been very successful at competing with other crops for water, just as they have competed for land,” he said.

Another UC report this year said farmers in general have sharply increased groundwater use to make up for reduced river supplies, raising concerns in some areas about overdrafting.

Waycott said the state’s growers have reduced their water use per pound of almonds by a third over the past 20 years.

Water Right Technologies, based in Escalon, supplies fertilizers and other products that help soil retain what little irrigation might be available.

“Anything you can do to improve the water-holding capacity of the soil or the strength of the trees helps,” co-founder Joseph Witzke said by phone Monday. He was getting ready to head to the three-day almond gathering at the Sacramento Convention Center, where he has a booth.

The company employs seven people, and the owners also have their own almond farm. Witzke said strong demand for the nuts, and uses such as almond milk and flour, have helped the industry thrive.

At another booth is Dean Doerksen, founder and CEO of Central Ag Products in Turlock, which connects almond and walnut growers with processors. He talked by phone Tuesday about how the spending ripples out.

“There are a lot of almond growers buying pickups and tractors and furniture,” he said. The list goes on: barn construction, equipment repair, loan processing, winter pruning and more.

Doerksen praised the Almond Board for spreading the word about the health benefits of the nuts, while also noting the concern about water supplies.

The report does not detail the typical wages for farm and processing plant workers, but Sumner said they “tend to be competitive” with other types of agriculture. He also said the industry is shifting, similar to food production overall, toward more year-round rather than seasonal work.

Waycott said the future looks bright because no other part of the world can compete with California and the sales are balanced among domestic markets and many foreign countries. Almonds are the state’s No. 1 farm export by value.