Daily Harvest -- 1/16/2015
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: USDA approves Monsanto cotton and soybean traits
- USDA announced its regulatory approval of Monsanto's genetically engineered crops resistant to the dicamba herbicide.
Agri-Pulse: Ernst selected for GOP response to Obama
- Freshman Iowa Sen. Joni Ernst will give the Republican response to President Obama's state of the union address next Tuesday.
Agri-Pulse: Little new policy for farm bureau this year
- (Audio) There were few issues that generated any controversy during the voting delegate session for the American Farm Bureau Federation’s this week.
The Economist: Seize the day
- The fall in the price of oil and gas provides a once-in-a-generation opportunity to fix bad energy policies.
Biomass Magazine: EPA: 2014 cellulosic RIN generation tops 33 million
- The U.S. EPA has released renewable identification number (RIN) generation data for December, reporting that more than 8.53 million cellulosic RINs were generated during the month. EIA data currently shows more than 33.01 million cellulosic RINs were generated in 2014.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Agri-Pulse: Speculation on contents of Dietary Guidelines may be premature
- (Subscriber only) Many within the agricultural community say that, judging by the committee's actions during its seven meeting, they are concerned that sustainability issues may improperly be included in the final Dietary Guidelines for Americans.
Agri-Pulse: Christian leaders press presidential hopefuls on plans to ease hunger
- A group of Christian leaders known as the Circle of Protection is once again inviting presidential candidates to submit brief video statements outlining their proposals to improve the well-being of hungry and impoverished Americans.
Associated Press: More schools serve students dinner as demand expands
- The nation's second largest school district is doubling the number of students served dinner, with an eye toward eventually offering it at every school. It's a growing trend: Nationwide, the number of students served dinner or an after-school snack soared to nearly 1 million last year.
Wall Street Journal: World Shows Signs That It’s Losing Its Sweet Tooth
- Cocoa consumption fell surprisingly sharply in the final months of 2014, a sign the broader global slowdown is having an effect on even those with a sweet tooth.
New York Times: Students Eat More Healthy Foods When Recess Is Held Before Lunch
- Research has long suggested that students who have recess before lunch rather than after waste less food. A newly published study gets more specific: Students purchasing a national school lunch are required to take either a serving of fruit or vegetables with their lunch.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Reuters: Japan TPP negotiator: felt US intends to wrap up talks in few months
- Japan's deputy chief trade negotiator Hiroshi Oe said on Wednesday he got the impression during talks that the United States intends to wrap up overall TPP discussions within a few months.
Washington Post: U.S. eases Cuban trade and travel rules as it moves toward restoring full ties
- The Obama administration announced new rules easing travel and trade restrictions against Cuba on Thursday, moving quickly to implement steps the president ordered less than a month ago when he said the United States would reestablish diplomatic relations with the island’s communist government.
The Hill: Senate to hold ‘robust’ hearings on Obama’s Cuba policy
- Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.), Foreign Relations Committee chairman, said Thursday he plans to hold intensive hearings to examine President Obama’s decision to ease sanctions on Cuba.
Bloomberg: Putin’s Grain Export Ban Seen Aiding Adversaries in EU, Ukraine
- Russian President Vladimir Putin’s decision to stop grain exports to rein in inflation will boost sales of wheat from the European Union and Ukraine, two political adversaries, an analyst said.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Wall Street Journal: USDA grants to benefit Chesapeake Bay restoration
- U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack says Chesapeake Bay restoration projects will receive more than $18 million in funding.
Washington Post: Farmers in dry California decry water decision favoring fish
- California farmers struggling with drought say a U.S. Supreme Court decision issued Monday that keeps strict water restrictions in place to protect a tiny, threatened fish has forced them to leave thousands of acres unplanted in the nation’s most fertile agricultural region.
Bloomberg: California Drought Outlook Extends at Least Into April
- Most of California will still be in drought in April even though conditions will probably improve across the southern part of the state, according to the latest forecast from the U.S. Climate Prediction Center.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
Politico: GOP stuck on immigration
- Republicans at the party’s retreat in Hershey struggled Thursday to describe a resolution to their impasse on the House-approved spending bill for the Department of Homeland Security, which cleared the chamber Wednesday with aggressive immigration provisions that stand no chance of getting 60 votes in the Senate.
The Hill: McConnell to House GOP: Don’t expect miracle on immigration
- Senate GOP leaders are using their joint retreat with the House to warn conservatives that they’re not going to be able to reverse President Obama’s executive orders on immigration.
Wall Street Journal: Man vs Drone: Some Pilots Fight Back Against Robots
- Aerial surveyors, photographers and moviemaking pilots are increasingly losing business to robots that often can do their jobs faster, cheaper and better.
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