Daily Harvest -- 3/25/2014
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: USDA’s Harden kicks off National Ag Day with Agri-Pulse
- USDA Deputy Secretary Krysta Harden kicked off National Ag Day activities with a discussion hosted by Agri-Pulse President Sara Wyant at the Hart Senate Office Building on Monday.
Agri-Pulse: Vilsack says changes in farm loan programs aimed at new generation of producers
- Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced modifications to the loan programs administered by the USDA's Farm Service Agency (FSA) as a result of the 2014 Farm Bill. The modifications will provide increased opportunities for the nation's agricultural producers, he said.
Roll Call: Unveiling of Borlaug Statue Highlights Fight Over Biotechnology
- Large-scale farming and agribusiness, derisively dubbed Big Ag by critics, look to polish their image this week with a Statuary Hall ceremony for a hero in the field and a screening of a documentary about young farmers and ranchers.
Roll Call: Meeting the Food Challenges of Tomorrow Through the Legacy of Borlaug | Commentary
- Steven Leath, Eric Kaler and Mark Hussey: When leaders of the House and Senate gather in the U.S. Capitol on Tuesday to dedicate a statue of Dr. Norman E. Borlaug, they will honor an American whose innovative agricultural research is credited with saving more than a billion people from starvation.
CNBC: Farming in America: 'There's a growing discontent'
- Professor Milt McGiffen, who researches sustainable agriculture at the University of California, Riverside, said American agriculture has a lot of problems, but mostly stemming from government regulation.
DTN: Ag Confidence Index Results
- Crop and livestock farmers' attitudes toward the agriculture economy are vastly different, according to the latest reading of the DTN/The Progressive Farmer Agriculture Confidence Index, yet their combined sentiment remains positive.
Wall Street Journal: Weather Worries Send Grain Prices Higher
- Grain prices jumped as dry weather in the U.S. southern Plains raised concerns about the nation's winter-wheat crop and persistent cold sparked worries about slow corn planting in the Midwest.
Journal Sentinel: Wisconsin farmers fight to end federal food vouchers' snub of potatoes
- U.S. potato growers, including big farms in Wisconsin, have again been snubbed by government officials who have kept fresh spuds off the list of approved foods for the federal Women, Infants and Children voucher system.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Bloomberg: Meat Eaters Gulp Record Prices Before U.S. Grilling Peaks
- Competitive eater and restaurant owner Jamie McDonald had no problem downing almost a dozen 11.5-ounce hamburgers in 10 minutes, or 9 pounds, 7.4 ounces of pulled pork. It’s the cost of the meat that’s making him gag.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Wall Street Journal: What's More American Than Parmesan Cheese?
- (Subscriber only) More than half the members of the U.S. Senate rose in defense of American dairy last week, in what could be a sign of how hard it will be to forge a comprehensive trans-Atlantic trade deal.
Bloomberg: Ukrainian Currency Drop Raises Farm Input Concern
- Ukraine’s plunging currency is raising concern that farmers may reduce purchases of fuel and pesticides later this season even as spring planting accelerates to the fastest pace in six years.
Associated Press: Wheat Futures Rise on Worries About Ukraine
- The price of wheat rose sharply Monday as traders worried that ongoing tensions in Ukraine will reduce exports from that region.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Kansas City Star: Environmental group says pesticides hurt bees and don't help farmers
- The pesticides that are synonymous with the demise of honeybees don't do much for the farmers that use them, according to a new analysis by a national environmental group.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
Politico: House Democrats press for immigration vote
- House Democrats plan to launch a discharge petition on Wednesday in a long-shot effort to force a floor vote on immigration reform – their latest move to pressure Republicans to advance an overhaul this year.
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