Daily Harvest -- 4/19/2016
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse Daybreak for April 19, 2016
- (Audio) House appropriators discuss biotech education, plus poultry, livestock and cottonseed; Mexico lifts poultry ban on 14 US states; SBA definition seen hurting family farms; Legal challenge emerges for Massachusetts animal cage petition; DuPont Pioneer announces gene-edited corn; and Cuban grain importers visit USDA.
Agri-Pulse: USDA officials diagnose rural America's needs
- Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack described the depth of poverty in rural America at a Farm Foundation Forum Monday, while at a separate meeting, Lisa Mensah, his top assistant on rural development, called for increased access to broadband as a way to give an economic boost to underserved communities.
Agri-Pulse: What does declining farm income mean for lending?
- (Audio) A recent report shows that the third straight year of declining farm incomes could start to have even more of an impact on the banks that serve agricultural clients.
The Hill: Agricultural research is the farmer’s ultimate antacid
- (Opinion) There is really only one solution on which we hang our collective hat – cold, hard science, writes American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall.
St. Louis Business Journal: Americans support activism by the likes of Monsanto, Dow: survey
- Corporate activism such as that by Monsanto and Dow Chemical is not only encouraged but expected, according to a recent survey.
Des Moines Register: Iowa farmers plant nearly 2 million acres of corn
- Last week Iowa farmers planted about 13 percent of the state's estimated 13.9 million corn acres, USDA reports show.
Ag Wired: Big Oil Wins Big on Taxes
- (Opinion) The 18th was Tax Day. While many Americans will receive a modest refund, oil producers are raking in the big bucks, $4 billion to $6 billion, through tax incentives dating back more than 100 years.
Wall Street Journal: Saudis Mix Politics and Oil Policy
- Saudi Arabia’s decision over the weekend to refuse to freeze oil output without Iran’s participation indicates a heightened willingness in the kingdom to mix politics and oil policy amid tensions with Tehran and Washington.
AG Week: Richardton, N.D., ethanol plant looks to future after debt is paid
- The nine-year-old investor-led company, which crushed corn into more than 54 million gallons of ethanol last year, informed investors at the company’s annual meeting March 17 that it had paid off its final $5.5 million in debt.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Reuters: How the World Health Organization's cancer agency confuses consumers
- Processed meat, such as bacon, ranks alongside plutonium as a carcinogen, according to an arm of the World Health Organization. Here’s how such assessments happen – and what they mean.
CNN Money: Monsanto CEO frustrated over 'polarized' GMO debate
- Monsanto's CEO is troubled by the public debate on genetically modified food. In the past, the heated rhetoric has threatened the company's reputation, but now it could hurt the bottom line.
Chicago Sun-Times: Egg Producer Rembrandt Foods to Build New Cage-Free Farm
- One of the nation’s largest egg producers says it plans to build a new cage-free farm in eastern South Dakota that will house 3 million egg-laying hens.
New York Times: How Many Eggs Does a Chicken Lay in Its Lifetime?
- A laying hen’s lifetime productivity depends on many factors, but one authoritative USDA survey on commercial operations puts the most recent U.S. figure at 276 eggs a year.
Wall Street Journal: Chobani Hires New CFO: ‘Everything’ on the Table
- Chobani, which controls about a fifth of the U.S. yogurt market, turned down a proposed partnership arrangement with PepsiCo Inc. earlier this year when the soft drink and snack food company wanted a majority stake.
Associated Press: How 4 AP reporters got the story 'Seafood from Slaves'
- The Associated Press expose on slavery in Southeast Asia's fishing industry, awarded the Pulitzer Prize for public service Monday, was born of a painstaking investigation that documented the harsh treatment of fishermen who supply U.S. supermarkets and restaurants.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Agri-Pulse: Cotton Council to fight Turkish anti-dumping penalties
- The National Cotton Council is vowing to fight Turkey's decision to impose anti-dumping penalties on U.S. cotton imports.
ABC Rural: S. Kidman and Co enters deal for a foreign takeover of the majority of the iconic Australian cattle company
- Family-owned S. Kidman & Co is Australia's largest private landholder, with properties covering 101,000 square kilometres in Western Australia, South Australia, the Northern Territory and Queensland.
Wall Street Journal: Heavy Rains Take Toll on Argentina’s Soybean Crop
- So much rain has fallen over Argentina in recent weeks that it could cost soybean farmers here up to $2 billion in lost output this year, analysts said Monday.
Voice of America: Transparency Boosts Brazil's Fight to Tackle Modern Slavery on Coffee Farms
- Poor Brazilians have been lured to coffee plantations with promises of good wages only to find themselves living in squalor and debt bondage.
Washington Post: Colombia resumes anti-coca spray dropped over cancer fears
- Colombia will resume using weed killer to destroy illegal coca crops less than a year after suspending its use due to cancer concerns, the government said Monday.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Des Moines Register: Water quality bills likely dead at Statehouse
- ”My sense is that, regardless of party, and particularly in the Republican ranks, there is no interest in raising taxes to come up with a new revenue stream," said Senate Minority Leader Bill Dix, R-Shell Rock.
Science Daily: Neonicotinoid seed treatments produce higher soybean yields in the Southern US
- Scientists from Mississippi State University have found that treating soybean seeds with neonicotinoid pesticides provides higher yields in southern U.S. states - findings that contrast with a 2014 EPA report.
New York Times: How Dwindling Fish Stocks Got a Reprieve
- (Opinion) After decades of shrinking fish populations, some trends have begun to shift. That’s because fishery managers devised a plan that allows for limits, without sinking the fishing industry.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
New York Times: Supreme Court Appears Divided on Obama’s Immigration Plan
- The Supreme Court on Monday seemed sharply divided during an extended argument over a challenge to President Obama’s plan that would shield millions of undocumented immigrants from deportation and allow them to work in the country legally.
Fresno Bee: Gerawan Farming to appeal ag board ruling in UFW case
- Gerawan Farming of Fresno has vowed to appeal a recent decision by the California Agricultural Labor Relations Board that rejected an attempt by the company’s workers to oust the United Farm Workers union.
Des Moines Register: Kinze Manufacturing lays off 121 workers
- Kinze Manufacturing said it will lay off 121 workers, effective in June, citing another year of low grain prices that have hit farm equipment manufacturers especially hard.
Wall Street Journal: Farmers Reap New Tools From Their Own High-Tech Tinkering
- The robot tractor isn’t a prototype or top-of-the-line showpiece. It’s an eight-year-old John Deere modified with drone parts, open-source software and a Microsoft Corp. tablet.
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