Daily Harvest -- 7/1/2014
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: (Subscriber only) USDA moves forward with crop insurance changes
- The U. S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Risk Management Agency (RMA) filed an interim rule with the Federal Register on Monday, allowing the agency to move forward with changes to seven crop insurance provisions, as authorized in the 2014 farm bill.
Agri-Pulse: Soybean acreage soars, corn acres decline
- About 84.8 million acres in the U.S. were planted with soybeans this year, up 11 percent from last year, as growers chased the higher prices offered by the oilseed in relation to corn, USDA said today in a report based on a survey of thousands of farmers in early June.
Agri-Pulse: EPA may wait until September to issue final RFS rule
- Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, and others say the decision may be part good news and bad news, but the decision is now not expected until this fall.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Bellingham Herald: As imports rise, the FDA is losing its fight against foul food
- Imports were supposed to face tighter scrutiny by now, after an overhaul of the way the FDA regulates imported and domestically produced foods. But outsized hopes for the law have gone unfulfilled because of agency delays, flagging interest in public funding in Congress and food industry opposition to proposed new user fees to finance the overhaul.
Reuters: Food makers feel their way towards online future
- Grocery manufacturers are struggling to adapt to the online world and need to invest in smarter packaging, presentation and supply chains to reap the long term benefits.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Financial Times: (Subscriber only) UK government should talk up benefits of GM crops
- Genetically modified crops would help the UK grow more of its own food, according to the Commons Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee.
MarketPulse: Japan and US Resume TPP Talks Before All Members Meeting
- Japan and the United States on Monday resumed bilateral talks on a Pacific free trade pact in Tokyo, aiming to bridge remaining differences as far as possible before officials from all 12 negotiating members gather in Canada later this week.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Agri-Pulse: Soil Health Renaissance Part II: Formulating a Strategy
- Author Bruce Knight tells how the 6th World Congress on Conservation Agriculture in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, developed a strategic plan that offers a cohesive and comprehensive approach to advancing soil health.
SFGate: Drakes Bay oyster farm denied Supreme Court hearing
- Without comment, the justices left in place court rulings upholding the Interior Department’s refusal to renew the lease of Lunny's company, which operates California's only oyster farm, but the owners vow to fight on.
CleanTechnica: Native American Reservations Embracing Renewable Energy Technologies
- For the over one million Native Americans living on reservations today, life expectancy is low and job opportunities scarce. Yet some Native American tribes are embracing renewable energy technologies as a way to access reliable electricity, bring in much needed income, and create jobs.
The Hill: Obama: US to help Chile build massive solar plant
- The Overseas Private Investment Corp. (OPIC) approved a loan guarantee of $230 million to support construction of the 141-megawatt solar plant, which is being built by Arizona-based First Solar. The power plant will help diversify Chile's energy sources while supporting Obama's national export agenda by facilitating roughly $97 million in U.S. exports.
Statesman Journal: Bees died of starvation, Oregon officials say
- Bees in five entire colonies that died suddenly in Clackamas County appear to have starved, Oregon Department of Agriculture Director Katy Coba told the legislative Task Force on Pollinator Health on Monday, but questions remain.
The Hill: Supreme Court won't hear challenge to Calif. fuel standard
- The Supreme Court turned away an appeal from fuel makers that claim the law unfairly targets out-of-state producers.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
Washington Post: Obama pledges to redirect immigration enforcement, conceding Congress won’t act
- President Obama angrily conceded Monday that Congress will not overhaul immigration laws this year and announced that he will redirect immigration enforcement efforts to the border. Obama said he will pursue executive actions by the end of summer.
Agri-Pulse: (Subscriber only) NCFC ‘disappointed’ as Obama, Boehner butt heads on immigration
- The National Council of Farmer Cooperatives (NCFC) is “deeply disappointed” after hearing President Obama relate that House Speaker John Boehner told him the House will not vote on immigration reform legislation this year. The Western Growers also weighed into the debate.
The Daily Beast: How Thad Cochran Pulled Off a Win Over Chris McDaniel (Simple, Really)
- Stuart Stevens writes that no trick strategies were necessary to push the incumbent over the Tea Party challenger in Mississippi. Instead, hard legwork and reaching out to past voters got it done.
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