Daily Harvest -- 1/22/2014
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: Drones and protection of ag data important issues for farmers
- (Audio) The use of unmanned aerial vehicles and the protection of agricultural data are two brand new areas of issues and concern for farmers and ranchers. The American Farm Bureau Federation took positions on both issues at last week’s annual meeting in San Antonio.
Journal and Courier: Donnelly working to refine Obamacare, farm bill
- Agreement on a five-year farm bill may be announced soon, according to Donnelly.
New York Times: Food Banks Anticipate Impact of Cuts to Food Stamps
- The Capital Area Food Bank, which provided about 45 million pounds of food last year, says it is preparing for even greater demand as Congress prepares to cut billions of dollars more from the food stamp program, which is included in a farm bill that has yet to pass.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Wall Street Journal: General Mills Has a Soggy Idea for Cheerios
- Henry Miller, founding director of the FDA's Office of Biotechnology, and Gregory Conko of the Competitive Enterprise Institute say that General Mills may find that its move to label its food as containing no materials from GMOs will neither catch on with "natural foods" devotees nor silence antitechnology activists. The company may also have put itself in a legally awkward position.
Chicago Tribune: 7-Eleven makes push into fresh foods
- With more consumers willing to pop in to a convenience store for a quick meal, 7-Eleven is aiming to build a name for itself in the competitive sector, much as Starbucks and Walgreens have made bigger pushes into food.
New York Times: Sundance: A Food Documentary That Hopes to Start a Movement
- “Fed Up,” which is narrated by Katie Couric, argues that food companies and their lobbyists have systematically misled consumers for decades, resulting in the world’s obesity epidemic.
The Salt Lake Tribune: Sundance documentary takes on weighty issue of food culture in America
- "Fed Up," now showing in the Sundance Film Festival’s U.S. Documentary Competition, follows a group of children for more than two years, as they try to "diet and exercise" and live healthier lives.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Food Safety News: Germany Identifies First ‘Mad Cow’ Case Since 2009
- German officials have identified one beef cow with a case of bovine spongiform encephalitis (BSE), the fatal neurological disorder also known as “Mad Cow Disease.”
Wall Street Journal: China's Taste for Corn Grows
- China's shift to a protein-rich diet is changing global trade flows. The Middle Kingdom is already the world's largest consumer of corn, and its rising food demands have turned the nation from being a net exporter of corn three years ago to the world's fifth-largest importer, according to financial-services firm Rabobank.
Associated Press: EU Suspends Part of Free Trade Talks With US
- The European Union announced Tuesday a partial suspension of the free trade negotiations with the United States to hold a three months-long public consultation due to worries about some of the deal's proposed rules for investment.
The Hill: Obama: Give me fast track trade
- The White House is making a major push to convince Congress to give the president trade promotion authority (TPA), which would make it easier for President Obama to negotiate pacts with other countries.
Reuters: Analysis - Syngenta risks fresh China corn dispute with unapproved trait
- Syngenta AG is pressing ahead with U.S. sales of a new corn trait that is not approved in China, fueling concerns of another jarring GMO trade quarrel with the world's fastest-growing food importer.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Agri-Pulse: NOAA: 2013 tied for 4th hottest year ever as warming trend continues
- Last year was the fourth hottest on record, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said yesterday.
Agri-Pulse: Opinion: Why I am a conservationist
- When I bought my first piece of land, my dad told me that my responsibility was to leave that land in better shape when it passed from my hands than it was in when I received it, says Bruce Knight, Principal of Strategic Conservation Solutions, in this opinion piece.
Los Angeles Times: New virus linked to bee colony collapse disorder
- A rapidly mutating virus has leaped from plants to honeybees, where it is reproducing and contributing to the collapse of colonies vital to the multibillion-dollar agricultural industry, according to a new study.
Financial Times: Google seals second Swedish wind farm deal
- (Subscriber only) Google has made its third bet on green energy in the space of three months, with a deal to buy all the electricity generated by four Swedish wind farms for 10 years.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
New York Times: 2 Friends Reach Across the Aisle on Immigration
- Rebecca Tallent, 34, is a key player in writing what Mr. Boehner and other House Republicans call guiding principles for an immigration overhaul. At the White House, Esther Olavarria is charged with finding a compromise that Democrats and activists can live with.
Politico: White House dials it down on immigration
- In meetings with immigration reform advocates, White House officials have said President Barack Obama won’t threaten to take unilateral executive action — at least not yet — and that he wants to give House Republicans some breathing room to try to pass legislation this year, said immigration advocates who have participated in the sessions.
The Hill: Court proceeds with CFTC case against Corzine
- Jon Corzine’s efforts to have a lawsuit filed against him by a federal regulator dismissed have come up short. A U.S. District judge determined that the push to toss a case filed by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission was “without merit.”
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