Daily Harvest -- 6/9/2014
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: Washington Week Ahead: Focus on School Nutrition Standards
- The Obama administration's push for healthier school meals will get lots of attention this week as the full House is expected to take up its fiscal year 2015 Agriculture appropriations bill while the Senate Agriculture Committee holds a hearing on child nutrition programs.
Agri-Pulse: Chris Novak, CEO of National Pork Board
- (Audio) Novak discusses the challenges and opportunities U.S. pork producers have experienced this year, including the loss of more than 8 million piglets from the Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea Virus (PEDV).
Agri-Pulse: COOL update from NPPC
- (Audio) A ruling by the World Trade Organization on mandatory Country of Origin Labeling will be coming later this summer, according to NPPC.
Agri-Pulse: DOT exempts livestock from Hours of Service requirement
- The U.S. Department of Transportation granted a one-year exemption to the Hours-of-Service requirement for the transportation of livestock, the agency announced today.
Los Angeles Times: Congress' drought legislation an arid offering
- Masquerading as a response to California's drought, a bill to waive environmental protections and divert more water to Central Valley agriculture passed the Republican-controlled House in February and is now going to conference to be reconciled with a competing bill by Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) that the Senate adopted last month.
Des Moines Register: Vilsack defends ethanol, discusses food stamp cuts
- Tom Vilsack, America's agricultural chief, is one of the few remaining original cabinet members in President Barack Obama's administration. It's no wonder he's still around.
Los Angeles Times: Vermont's new GMO law may upend food industry nationwide
- The biggest worry weighing on the nation's food industry may not be drought in the West, farmworker shortages or turbulent international trade negotiations, but a change in the regulatory code in Vermont.
Des Moines Register: Deadly pig virus puts producers in a quandary
- The market is telling producers to boost inventories: Low supplies have driven prices 40 percent higher in recent months. That would help bacon lovers, who've been slammed with skyrocketing prices for their salty, crunchy addiction.
Des Moines Register: Sides clash over hog facility expansions in Iowa
- Manning sees the suburbs closing in on his family's business, hemming in his ability to grow. More people means the possibility for more crime, traffic and opposition from nonfarm neighbors.
Los Angeles Times: Organic agriculture attracts a new generation of farmers
- Agriculture officials are hoping more young people heed the call to till the land, whether organically or conventionally, as the average age of California farmers continues to climb. It hit 58 in 2012, up by nearly two years from 2007, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture's most recent census.
The Hill: House eyes CFTC tweaks
- House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) told lawmakers in a Friday memo that the chamber will take up legislation reauthorizing the derivatives regulator this month.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Agri-Pulse: USDA farmers market opens for 19th year as local food movement grows
- For the 19th straight year, the USDA will open its Farmers Market just off the National Mall in Washington on Friday, amid signs that the local food movement is more than alive and well.
Los Angeles Times: Farmers markets reaching more consumers who get nutritional benefits
- Other California farmers markets have also begun to reach more consumers who receive nutritional benefits, thanks in part to a subsidy from private and public sources that stretches their buying power.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Los Angeles Times: U.S. farmers making hay with alfalfa exports to China
- Since 2009, alfalfa exports to China grew nearly eightfold to a record 575,000 tons — shipped overseas in the same containers that deliver the latest iPhones and flat-screen TVs from Chinese factories.
Kansas City Star: For Kansas wheat, drought and Russia lead to a harvest of hard luck
- Farmers who planted vistas of hard red winter wheat this past September, when rainfall and soil conditions appeared to be rebounding, saw a bitter winter and dry spring stunt their fields.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Washington Post: USDA’s Wildlife Services killed 4 million animals in 2013; seen as an overstep by some
- For years, the massive toll of wild animals exterminated by the federal government as a service to everything from airports to ranches has bounced up and down like a yo-yo. Last year it was up again.
Roll Call: Pesticide Ban Is Just One Piece of Honeybee Puzzle
- While the Conyers-Blumenauer legislation is gaining some traction, passage is a long way off. Bee researchers say that neonics are just one of many factors weakening and killing bees, and Congress should focus on other avenues.
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