Yuba-Sutter Ag Updates - Friday, August 22, 2014

Sutter and Yuba County Walnut Theft Ordinances
Recently the Sutter County Board of Supervisors and Yuba County Board of Supervisors passed and adopted Walnut Theft Prevention Ordinances for their respective counties.  

The purpose of these ordinances is to establish requirements regarding the transportation and identification of walnut crops, including establishing a walnut buying period.  It is the purpose and intent of this ordinance to establish a means of verifying ownership of specified agricultural commodities in order to prevent and deter theft of walnuts.

In brief:

Walnuts transported directly by a grower from the farm or ranch where they are grown to a commercial processing or packing plant are exempt from this ordinance.

This ordinance establishes a Walnut Buying Period.  The Walnut Buying Period is declared by each Agricultural Commissioner upon the conclusion of harvest of the Chandler variety of walnuts. At that time, non-processing walnut buying operations within each county may lawfully purchase and receive walnuts that have not been dried or processed.  This buying period shall be proclaimed seventy-two (72) hours in advance by press release and shall remain in effect until April 30th of the following year.

If a person in possession of walnuts is not the grower, they must have a completed Proof of Ownership certificate. The Proof of Ownership certificate shall remain with the walnuts until sold.  Following any sale of walnuts, the proof of ownership certificate shall be retained by the buyer for a period of two (2) years from the date of each sale. 

A Proof of Ownership certificate approved by the Sutter County Agricultural Commissioner is available by clicking here.  The form is also available on the Sutter County Agricultural Commissioner’s website,

A Proof of Ownership certificate approved by the Yuba County Agricultural Commissioner is available by clicking here.  The form is also available on the Yuba County Agricultural Commissioner's website,

If you buy, process or resell walnuts you may also be required to comply with the following:

Market Enforcement Branch license issued by the California Department of Food and Agriculture.

Weighmaster license issued by the Division of Measurement Standards.

Have a registered and sealed commercial scale on file by our office as required by Sutter County Ordinance Code Chapter 215.

Please contact Janet Kirkman at (530) 822-7500 if you have any questions or visit the Sutter County Agricultural Commissioner’s website at:

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