Daily Harvest News Service
Daily Harvest -- 4/3/2014
Here's your daily summary of top news from and other national and regional headlines from across the country. Do you know of someone who should also be on our list? Please ask them to click here.


Agri-Pulse: USDA official pledges to reduce biotech approval backlog
Link - (Subscriber only) The head of USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) told a congressional panel yesterday that the department plans to have the backlog of pending petitions for biotechnology products reduced by half within a year.

Agri-Pulse: Senators propose new caps on crop insurance premium subsidies
Link - Less than two months after President Barack Obama signed a new farm bill into law, two U.S. senators are already eager to change it - including one who voted for the $956 billion package on Feb. 7.

Agri-Pulse: Water resources bill conference committee member expects progress
Link - (Audio) A member of the conference committee on the water resources development bills passed in the House and Senate last year expects to see a final bill possibly in the next month or so. Congressman Rodney Davis, R-Ill., said it’s not a partisan debate and a majority of the issues are agreed to.

Agri-Pulse: Georgia lawmakers press for Savannah Harbor funding
Link - All of the 14 members of the Georgia House delegation urged a House appropriations panel today to support funding for the Savannah Harbor Expansion Project.

Food Safety News: ‘Historic Wins’ for Organic Industry in New Farm Bill
Link - Now, instead of being “under the bus,” organic farmers and others in the industry are sitting on the bus. Funding for the previously lost programs has been reestablished, and, in some cases, increased. And other programs have been added.

Washington Post: In Congress, committee chairmen head for the exits but some lawmakers still want the job
Link - At 76, Sen. Thad Cochran could have easily retired this year rather than trying to battle through an ideologically divisive primary in pursuit of a seventh term. Instead, the Mississippi Republican decided it was worth the trouble, because he wants another chance at chairing a Senate committee.


ABC News: Soda Losing Its Grip on America
Link - Americans drank an average of 51 gallons of soda in 1998; today we drink nearly 20 percent less -- 44 gallons, according to data from Beverage Digest, a trade publication and data service.

Los Angeles Times: Solutions sought to reduce food waste at schools
Link - Federal rules require students to take at least three items each day, but an L.A. Unified manager wants to change the policy to reduce the $100,000 in food thrown away daily.

New York Times: Fake Meats, Finally, Taste Like Chicken
Link - Demand for meat alternatives is growing, fueled by trends as varied as increased vegetarianism and concerns over the impact of industrial-scale animal husbandry on the environment.

New York Times: Old Forecast of Famine May Yet Come True
Link - Malthus’s prediction was based on an eminently sensible premise: that the earth’s carrying capacity has a limit. On Monday, the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change provided a sharp-edged warning about how fast we are approaching this constraint.


Wall Street Journal: Liking the Taste of China's Pork Play
Link - When China's largest pork distributor acquired America's largest pork producer, it was a tasty match. Now the two are going to the public market to sanctify their union as the world's top pork firm.

Roll Call: Japan and the Trans-Pacific Partnership: All In, or Out?
Link - U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman will give congressional lawmakers an update on the Obama administration’s trade agenda Thursday, including its efforts to close out Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations.


Agri-Pulse: Opinion: Clearer protections for clean water support a strong farm economy
Link - EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy writes about the Clean Water Act proposal, which she said is based on sound science and the law, to clarifies which waters are protected-with an eye toward those vital waters upstream.

Agri-Pulse: EPA faulted for failing to 'consistently present' risks in pollution studies on humans
Link - The EPA'S Inspector General is criticizing the agency for failing to “consistently represent” risks to human volunteers in consent forms for air pollution experiments, including information on long-term cancer risks in some instances.

Los Angeles Times: Drought in California may hinder job growth for years, economists say
Link - Lack of rain in 2013 could diminish the fishing and manufacturing sectors in California, the UCLA Anderson Forecast says. Even without the weather factor, L.A. is grappling with major problems with its job market.

New York Times: Program Looks to Give Bees a Leg (or Six) Up
Link - Here in California’s Central Valley, researchers are trying to find assortments of bee-friendly plants that local farmers and ranchers can easily grow, whether in unusable corners and borders of their land or on acreage set aside with government support.

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