Retailer Vitamin World will shutter stores at the Hanford Mall and in Tulare at the outlet mall in coming weeks. The NY-based company has hired Gordon Brothers Retail Partners LLC to immediately start going-out-of-business sales at 124 stores in more than 30 states after they declared bankruptcy. The company has more than 440 locations.

Navy’s ‘Liberty Solar Project’ construction likely in 2019

Recurrent Energy Group signed a long-term lease agreement with the U.S. Navy on October 2016 for 930 acres of land on Lemoore Naval Air Station. With this lease, Recurrent plans to construct a 125 megawatts alternating current power project. In return for use of the land, Recurrent will provide a resilient power solution for key operations on the Naval Air Station says the Navy.

The overall timing for the construction of the power project will depend on a number of different variables related to interconnection to the grid, infrastructure improvements and energy offtake agreements says Navy spokesperson Lisa Brundage.

“Our current forecast is for construction activities for the Liberty Solar Project at Lemoore Naval Air Station to commence in early 2019 with project completion by mid-2021 at the latest.”

Turkey is bargain this year

USDA says we ate plenty of turkeys this past week. Nationwide over 240 million turkeys were raised in 2016 and nearly 50 million of those birds are consumed on Thanksgiving Day. Thanksgiving season often marks the low point for the retail mark up for whole turkeys. This year, low wholesale prices were likely a good sign for price-conscious consumers.

Wholesale turkey prices fell in 2017, relative to 2016. Typically prices climb until Thanksgiving. But this year, whole turkey prices have dipped further throughout the summer. The average price for a whole frozen hen in August was just under 97 cents per pound, 3 percent below January and 19 percent below August 2016. As of the fourth week of September, prices had fallen farther to 96 cents.

Dairymen not complaining about price of corn

The U.S. corn crop is estimated to be a sizable 14.578 billion bushels says USDA, pushing December futures down to $3.37 this week, a level that makes feed more affordable for dairymen at a time milk prices are not great. This past summer corn prices looked closer to $4.

California car sales fall

New light vehicle registrations in the state fell in the third quarter of this year, the second consecutive decline says the California New Car Dealers Association. Still, the group predicts annual new light vehicle registrations will remain around the 2 million unit level through 2018.

In the latest report trucks again were better sellers than cars. New passenger car registrations in the state fell 10.7 percent through September of this year, while light trucks were up 7.7 percent. New light truck registrations exceeded 693,000 units so far this year, about 25,000 higher than the total for cars. Light truck registrations trailed cars by more than 100,000 units during the same period in 2016.

The best selling full-size truck was the Ford-F series. Meanwhile, electric vehicles share of all sales rose to 2.5 percent this year from 1.9 percent in 2016. Subaru topped all brands in sales of new vehicles, up 14 percent this year through September.

John Lindt is an independent business reporter. He can be reached at sierra2thesea@gmail.com

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