Daily Harvest -- 3/8/2016
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse Daybreak for March 8, 2016
- (Audio) Advocates say federal biotech legislation to pass Senate before Easter recess; A GIPSA rule is on the way; USDA praises SNAP enrollment drop; Canada watching Congress on COOL; and Jay Faison pushes GOP to curb climate change.
Agri-Pulse: Vilsack details to-do list for final months on the job at NFU convention
- (Subscriber only) What to expect from Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack in the final months of the Obama administration? Vilsack detailed his to-do list Monday in an address to the National Farmers Union convention
Agri-Pulse: Washington Week Ahead: Floor fight looms over biotech labeling
- Both sides of the biotech labeling debate are gearing up for a final showdown on the Senate floor that could arrive as soon as this week.
Agri-Pulse: NCGA keeping an eye on crop insurance
- (Audio) After multiple attempted cuts to the federal crop insurance program, Chip Bowling with the National Corn Growers Association says current market conditions make it more important than ever.
Sacramento Bee: Drone test site receives approval for precision ag testing
- North Dakota's unmanned aircraft test site has received Federal Aviation Administration approval to fly a drone used for precision agriculture.
Sacramento Bee: Farmers consider expensive tech amid low commodity prices
- Though technology can help a farmer raise his yields, the quality of his crops and, therefore, his profits, it also has a price tag – sometimes tens of thousands of dollars. But one farmer said he didn’t see “the technology as a luxury at all. I see it as important as the tractors that are on our farm.”
Washington Post: DuPont seeking $9.6 million from Delaware government
- DuPont, which announced in December that it is merging with Dow Chemical, is requesting up to $9.6 million over five years from Delaware’s Strategic Fund.
Midland Reporter-Telegram: Oil company shutting down Alaska operations
- A Houston-based company that has been exploring oil and gas resources in the Cook Inlet area of Alaska says it plans to leave the state because of low oil prices.
The Guardian: MIT researchers turn waste gas into liquid fuel
- MIT researchers have demonstrated with engineered microbes how to turn emissions from power stations, steel mills and garbage dumps into liquid fuels. The process uses bacteria to convert the waste gases into acetic acid – vinegar – then into an engineered yeast to produce an oil.
The Hill: Cardin and Delaney: Clean energy rising
- (Opinion) The bottom line is that if we don’t address climate change now, the cost to our country will be enormous. If we do address climate change by investing in clean energy, we will reap huge benefits, the Maryland lawmakers write.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Wall Street Journal: Vermont Invades Your Kitchen
- (Opinion) The organic legislators of Vermont will soon mandate deceptive and costly food labels that would harm consumers across the U.S., and it’s up to Congress to correct the overreach.
New York Times: We’re Losing the Race Against Antibiotic Resistance, but There’s Also Reason for Hope
- (Opinion) The widespread use of antibiotics in the raising of animals has clearly contributed to the development of resistance. The Food and Drug Administration estimates that more kilograms of antibiotics are sold in the United States for food-producing animals than for people.
Associated Press: Grin and rate it: Research uses emojis for school lunches
- Emojis may hold the key to ferreting out grade-school children's true feelings about foods, Kansas researchers say, and could help schools across the nation cut down on lunchroom food waste.
New York Times: To Reinvigorate Sales, Mondelez Reimagines the Snack
- Mondelez International, the large snacks and confections business that used to be part of Kraft, is introducing its first new product line in years.
Modern Farmer: Chef Curtis Stone Wants America To Have #MoreFarmers
- “Like any chef, farmers are a big part of my life. At my restaurant, Maude, in Beverly Hills, each month we create the menu around one seasonal ingredient and so we’re working closely with a lot of diverse farmers to build those menus,” says Curtis Stone.
Washington Post: Paleo-diet debates evolve into something bigger
- We have not just Paleo diets — the subject of multiple bestsellers — but also Paleo exercise, Paleo sleeping and Paleo toilets. They’re all based on the premise that our bodies are more suited for Paleo-era habits.
New York Times: Studies Offer Hope for Malnourished Children
- Starving children have gut bacterial colonies that are “immature” compared with those of healthy children, and their mothers’ breast milk may lack sugars that can nourish the right bacteria, researchers have found.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Ag Week: EU to defer decision on safety of weed-killer ingredient glyphosate
- The European Union will defer a decision on whether to extend approval for weed-killer ingredient glyphosate, used in herbicides including Monsanto's Roundup, following a dispute between EU and U.N. agencies over whether it causes cancer, EU sources said on Monday.
Reuters: Egypt Replaces Head of Agriculture Quarantine Authority
- Egypt has appointed a new head of its agriculture quarantine authority, the ministry of agriculture said on Sunday, replacing Saad Moussa, a figure who has been at the centre of a controversy over the country's wheat import requirements.
The Seattle Times: Indonesia agency pushes plan to tackle deforestation, fires
- Indonesia’s anti-graft commission on Monday said government agencies have agreed on a plan to combat corruption in the forestry industry that costs the state billions of dollars in lost revenue and is behind fires that pollute Southeast Asia.
New York Times: Italy’s Famed Wine Region a War Zone, Invaded by Boars and Others
- Wild boar and deer damage costs an estimated $11 million to $16 million a year in lost harvest. There are also the costs of erecting and keeping up fences, which themselves have proved controversial because of criticism that they mar the beauty of the Tuscan countryside.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
LA Times: Deadly superbugs from hospitals get stronger in the sewers and could end up in the Pacific Ocean
- A growing number of studies show sewage plants can't kill the superbugs. Instead the facilities serve as "a luxury hotel" for drug-resistant bacteria, a place where they thrive and grow stronger.
LA Times: Dirty water isn't just a Flint problem
- (Opinion) From a California vantage point, Flint's water troubles can appear a bit alien. Those folks in Michigan have seen lots of hard times, but clean water — they have plenty of that, right? Parched California should be so lucky.
ABC News: Class action suit filed by residents over Flint water crisis
- A lawsuit stemming from Flint's lead-contaminated water was filed Monday on behalf of the city's residents against Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder as well as other current and former government officials and corporations.
Chicago Tribune: Bison on the loose in Wisconsin euthanized, several returned to owner
- A herd of bison is no longer roaming in southeastern Wisconsin. The Kenosha County Sheriff's Department says the farmer who owned the herd decided to euthanize the remaining bison that were still wandering after escaping from their enclosure Saturday.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
New York Times: More Latinos Seek Citizenship in a Backlash Against Trump
- Donald Trump’s harsh language against Mexican immigrants has driven legal residents to seek citizenship in time to vote against him in November.
LA Times: Mexican-style rodeos in Texas can be a deadly ride
- As Dallas' Hispanic population has grown, the rodeos have attracted bigger crowds. Though dangerous, the events are places where families gather for fun and where riders test their courage and skill.
ABC News: Pennsylvania Governor Raising Minimum Wage for State Workers
- Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf is preparing to raise the minimum wage by nearly $3 an hour, to $10.15, for state government employees and workers on jobs contracted by the state.
Albuquerque Journal: Owner of New Mexico fertilizing mine eyes money problems
- A company that operates a crop fertilizing mine near Carlsbad is facing financial problems due to falling prices, causing uncertainty in yet another industry in New Mexico amid an oil and natural gas downturn.
Wall Street Journal: Why Drones Aren’t Delivering to Investors Yet
- DJI, the China-based company that is the undisputed drone market leader, launched its latest drone last week. That product, the Phantom 4, brings several autopilot-like capabilities to an industry still often plagued by human error.
Miami Herald: Operator of Miami illegal slaughterhouse to challenge animal-cruelty law
- An unlicensed slaughterhouse was operated far outside the rules of modern state and federal law, investigators say, but owner Gregorio Santa Ana has rejected the charges against him, calling Florida’s animal-cruelty law vague and unconstitutional.
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