Daily Harvest -- 1/27/2015
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: Farm program costs rise on price drop, disaster aid
- Farm programs will cost $18 billion more over the next decade than previously estimated, due to lower commodity prices and a surge in demand for livestock disaster assistance, congressional budget analysts say.
Agri-Pulse: Scott Graves heads list of House Ag Committee Staffers
- The House Agriculture Committee on Wednesday approved the list of senior staffers who will lead the panel in the 114th Congress. In November, Rep. Mike Conaway, R-Texas, the then-incoming chairman of the committee, had announced the appointments.
The Columbian: Putting drones to work in agriculture: 5 effects
- When it comes to drones, "your imagination can go pretty wild in terms of what would be possible," says Roger Johnson, president of the National Farmers Union.
Washington Post: Extra funding sought to fight antibiotic-resistant bacteria
- The Obama administration wants to double the amount of federal funding dedicated to combating antibiotic-resistant bacteria, a mounting problem that causes an estimated 2 million illnesses and 23,000 deaths annually in the United States.
Wall Street Journal: Farmers Move to Open Stalls for Hogs, but Reluctantly
- For hog farmers, the burgeoning shift away from controversial gestation crates is presenting some hefty challenges.
Wall Street Journal: The Business Side of Animal Rights
- Animal-welfare advocates are courting a new Wall Street ally as they take on big U.S. meatpackers: proxy advisory firms.
Agri-Pulse: USDA offers $20 million in funding for carbon credit market proposals
- USDA is offering up to $20 million in grant funding through the Conservation Innovation Grant (CIG) program for carbon credit project proposals.
Reuters: U.S. regulators should study oil slump: CFTC official
- U.S. futures market regulators should review the sharp drop in crude oil prices to gain a better understanding of the slide as they pursue rules to crack down on speculation in commodities, a top official said on Monday.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Wall Street Journal: Pork Prices Drop as Hog Herds Recover
- In the futures market, U.S. hogs are trading at four-year lows as herds bounce back from a virus that has killed millions of pigs since the spring of 2013. The outbreak of porcine epidemic diarrhea virus, or PEDv, set off a rally that sent prices to record highs last year.
Reuters: Europe's food fight shifts after GM crop vote
- Campaign groups and the biotech industry are digging in for a new round of conflict, following the European Union's decision to allow member states to set their own rules on growing genetically modified organisms.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Agri-Pulse: Pork producers, cattlemen urge Congress to pass Trade Promotion Authority
- The National Pork Producers Council and the National Cattlemen's Beef Association are urging Congress to renew the president's Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), as a way to help the Obama administration close trade agreements such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).
Agri-Pulse: Trade Promotion Authority in the spotlight
- (Audio) Trade Promotion Authority is in the spotlight this week after President Obama made it a priority in his State of the Union speech last week. In the Republican response, Senator Joni Ernst of Iowa agreed with the president about increasing trade opportunities.
Reuters: US pig farmers see 'significant progress' in Pacific trade pact
- U.S. pork producers on Monday hailed "significant progress" in Asia-Pacific regional trade talks and urged lawmakers to give the White House authority to fast-track trade deals, a sign that a deadlock with Japan may be softening.
Associated Press: China Moves to Accept Imports of All US Apple Varieties
- For the first time, all varieties of apples from the United States will go on sale in China, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said Monday.
The Hill: Bank lobby: Dodd-Frank isn't Scripture
- Frank Keating, chief of the American Bankers Association, criticized lawmakers who refuse to revisit the bill or make any changes, and he added that no one should mistake the Wall Street overhaul with biblical teaching.
Reuters: Japanese rice: the new, safe luxury food in China
- First it was European infant formula, then New Zealand milk. Now Chinese consumers are adding Japanese rice to the list of everyday foods they will bring in from abroad at luxury-good prices because they fear the local alternatives aren't safe.
Reuters: Canadian railways falling short in moving grain - farm coalition
- Canada's two big railways are failing to meet demand for moving grain from farms to ports and North American buyers, despite government intervention, a report by a coalition of farmer and industry groups said on Monday.
The Hill: Obama unveils $4B India trade push
- President Obama unveiled $4 billion in new federal initiatives designed to boost trade between the U.S. and India during a summit with top business leaders Monday in New Delhi.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Texas Lawyer: Case Could Alter the Reach of the Endangered Species Act
- The U.S. District Court for the District of Utah attracted national attention with its November decision in People for the Ethical Treatment of Property Owners v. United States Fish and Wildlife Service, in which it ruled unconstitutional the federal regulation of a purely intrastate species on nonfederal land under the Endangered Species Act.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
Associated Press: 2 more states join Texas-led immigration lawsuit
- Texas says two more states have joined its coalition suing over the Obama administration’s executive action on immigration, meaning 26 states are now part of the case.
Los Angeles Times: White House touts economic effect of Obama's immigration program
- The White House said Monday that President Obama's executive actions on immigration could boost California's economy by as much as $27.5 billion.
Associated Press: Millions of GMO Insects Could Be Released in Florida Keys
- Millions of genetically modified mosquitoes could be released in the Florida Keys if British researchers win approval to use the bugs against two extremely painful viral diseases.
Associated Press: Small Drone Found on White House Grounds: Law Enforcement Sources
- A small drone was found on the White House grounds overnight, the United States Secret Service confirmed on Monday, but White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said the situation “does not pose any sort of ongoing threat.”
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