Daily Harvest -- 1/7/2015
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: Missouri summit aims to take beef cattle industry higher
- (Audio) Governor Jay Nixon convened a summit on Monday to discuss opportunities to maximize the potential of Missouri’s beef cattle industry.
Associated Press: FAA Grants Permits for Agriculture, Real Estate Drones
- The Federal Aviation Administration on Tuesday issued permits to use drones to monitor crops and photograph properties for sale, marking the first time permission has been granted to companies involved in agriculture and real estate.
Wall Street Journal: Sheep Farmers Take Hit as Demand for Hides Falls
- Australian and New Zealand farmers are having a tough time selling lambskins as China’s tanneries face slowing demand for the products, particularly from Russia, and as Beijing cracks down on some chemical-intensive processing plants.
Statesman Journal: Oregon agriculture officials adopting hemp farming rules
- As Oregon gets ready for legal recreational pot at mid-year, some farmers are eager to put in their first crops of hemp, the marijuana cousin that won't get you high.
Wall Street Journal: Monsanto Must Keep Planting Seeds
- The world’s growing population combined with a scarcity of new arable land has been driving demand for crops with resistance to disease and pesticides.
Agri-Pulse: 'Under New Management' - Senate to tackle energy, renewables first
- (Subscriber only) If all goes as planned by the Senate's new GOP leadership, the first legislation to land on the chamber's floor will be the "Keystone XL Pipeline Approval Act."
Agri-Pulse: Ethanol expects continued fight for RFS in 2015
- (Audio) As new leadership assumes control of a new congress this week, Renewable Fuels Association Bob Dinneen says he expects the same old challenges to the Renewable Fuel Standard this year.
Bloomberg: Coffee With Sugar Rally on Brazil Concerns to Defy Oil Collapse
- Defying the rout in oil prices, the coffee and sugar markets are rallying because of supply concerns in Brazil, the world’s top producer and exporter of the so-called soft commodities.
New York Times: Gov. Jerry Brown Begins Last Term With a Bold Energy Plan
- Gov. Jerry Brown began his fourth and final term on Monday proposing a broad reduction in California’s energy consumption over the next 15 years — including a call to slash gas consumption by cars and trucks by as much as 50 percent — as part of what he said would be a sweeping campaign to heighten the state’s role in the fight against global warming.
Wall Street Journal: Oil’s Latest Drop Further Pressures Ethanol Companies
- Crude oil’s latest skid Monday dealt another dent to ethanol producers’ shares, as investors gauged the potential for slimmer profits on each gallon of the corn-based fuel additive.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Vice News: Environmental Impacts Will Not Be Part of Updated Federal Dietary Guidelines
- An advisory committee to the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) has reversed course and will not recommend that the agency consider the environmental impact of food production when updating its national dietary guidelines, a USDA official told VICE News on Monday.
Los Angeles Times: Opinion: 10 tired food trends that should expire in 2015
- Because of this surge of interest in the food world and its inextricable link to the Internet, trends seem to completely consume food culture, sometimes for better and sometimes for worse. From food deserts to culinary mashups, here are a few trends that we hope to say goodbye to in 2015.
Huffington Post: Food Stamp Enrollment Expected To Drop By 1 Million Next Year
- Food stamp enrollment is expected to fall by 1 million next year thanks to harsher rules, according to a new report by a liberal Washington, D.C., think tank.
The Philadelphia Inquirer: DuPont develops new cooking oil from genetically-modified soybeans
- Made by DuPont Pioneer from genetically modified soybeans, the new oil may have the potential to shift, at least a little, the debate over foods made from genetically-modified organisms.
Reuters: Corn syrup more toxic than table sugar in female mice: study
- Corn syrup was found to be more toxic to female mice than table sugar, shortening their lives and cutting their rate of reproduction, according to a study by University of Utah researchers published online in a scientific journal on Monday.
Wall Street Journal: Farmers Deploy New DNA Test for Tastier Meat
- By having his animals’ DNA scanned by a gene-testing firm, Mr. Gardiner, a Kansas cattle breeder, can tell nearly from birth how many pounds they are likely to pack on per day and how much rich, marbled beef their carcasses will yield.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
The Telegraph: Cornish pasty ‘threatened by EU-US trade deal'
- German agriculture minister warns that laws protecting regional foods - such as Germany's Black Forest Ham - may be at risk under a transatlantic trade agreement.
Reuters: EU says German sausages not at risk in U.S. trade deal
- The European Union will not water down its strict geographic food names under a far-reaching trade deal with the United States despite a suggestion by Germany's farm minister that not every style of sausage could be protected, the EU executive said on Tuesday.
The Hill: US, Mexico team up on Cuba policy
- President Obama and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto agreed Tuesday to work together on U.S. plans to reestablish diplomatic and economic ties with Cuba after a lapse of more than 50 years.
Wall Street Journal: Voting ‘Yes’ on Trade Is Hard for Democrats—but Necessary
- A debate over free trade is looming as one of Washington’s first big stories of 2015. The issue has already drawn attention because it’s an area where the new Republican majority in the Senate may actually help President Obama, whose trade policies have more vocal support among Republicans than Democrats.
Wall Street Journal: Federal Mediators to Assist in West Coast Port Labor Negotiations
- Federal mediators have been brought in to help resolve monthslong labor negotiations at West Coast ports, a move that retailers, manufacturers and government officials hailed as signaling a possible end to costly uncertainty and delays seen at the nation’s main conduits for trade with Asia.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Agri-Pulse: USDA marks 2015 as International Year of Soils
- USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack joined with Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) chief Jason Weller and Thomas Tidwell, the head of the U.S. Forest Service on Tuesday to mark 2015 as the International Year of Soils (IYS).
Delaware News Journal: New Castle County unveils farm preservation program
- New Castle County's administration has quietly drawn up a new farmland preservation program and lined up a $3 million federal subsidy, with initial efforts focused on salvaging two state development rights purchases that fell apart last year.
New York Times: With Veto Threat, Obama and Congress Head for Collision Over Keystone Pipeline
- The White House on Tuesday made it clear that President Obama would veto a bill authorizing construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline, setting up an immediate clash with Republicans just as they assume control of Congress.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
The Hill: Obama presses Mexico to help stop illegal immigration
- President Obama pressed Mexico’s president on Tuesday to work alongside the U.S. government to prevent a new surge of illegal immigrants.
Politico: House bill would undo President Obama’s immigration moves
- Rep. Robert Aderholt’s proposal would override Obama’s decision to defer deportations for up to 5 million immigrants.
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