Daily Harvest -- 7/7/2016
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse Daybreak for July 7, 2016
- Agri-Pulse: The Senate’s landmark compromise on GMO labeling has one final vote to go today before heading to the House. Also: Obama wins OK for signature development initiative; rice growers see increased food aid demand; drought moves into South; dueling aninmal welfare films.
Agri-Pulse: GMO disclosure advances on crucial Senate vote
- In a landmark step for agricultural biotechnology, the Senate advanced a compromise on GMO disclosure that will preempt state labeling mandates and allow digital disclosure of genetically engineered ingredients.
Agri-Pulse: GMO labeling bill continues path through Senate
- (Audio) Statements from Senators Pat Roberts and Debbie Stabenow on the bill that easily cleared a cloture vote.
N.Y. Times: G.M.O. Labeling Bill Clears First Hurdle in Senate
- A federal bill that would require labeling of foods made with genetically engineered ingredients passed a major hurdle in the Senate on Wednesday, significantly raising the odds that a national standard for labeling will put an end to a fight that has roiled the food industry for years.
The Hill: Group drops $2,000 on Senate floor to protest GMO bill
- Members of the Organic Consumers Association threw money from the Senate gallery onto the floor on Wednesday to protest a vote on a bill to block states from issuing mandatory labeling laws for foods that contain genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
Agri-Pulse: Republicans go after top EPA official at hearing on air regs
- Blame it on the election season, the heat and humidity, or the combustible combination of House Republicans and a high-ranking EPA official. Whatever the reasons, the hearing on air regulations in the Rayburn House Office Building was marked by more sharp words than usual.
The Hill: Senators looking to clear the way for energy bill vote
- Senators are scrambling to figure out how to get to a conference committee on an energy reform bill.
Fox Business: Murray Energy CEO: Bankruptcy is Possible for Us
- Murray Energy, America’s largest private coal producer, announced 4,400 jobs could be cut in six states, with bankruptcy being a possibility as well, citing the Obama Administration’s war on coal.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Agri-Pulse: House Ag hearing dives into SNAP malfeasance
- A hearing of the House Agriculture Committee explored potential errors in policing the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, but some Democrats continue to question the motives of the panel's oversight.
N.Y. Times: A Flawed Approach to Labeling Genetically Modified Food
- (Editorial) The Senate bill "would allow companies to use confusing electronic codes for scanning instead of simple, clear labels.... While most scientists say that genetically modified foods do not pose a risk to human health, consumers should have a right to more information about what they are eating."
Farm Futures: $200,000 more federal support for Food LINC
- USDA has announced $200,000 in additional support for Food LINC, a three-year initiative to expand local and regional market opportunities for America's farmers and ranchers.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Agri-Pulse: House vote sends food aid bill to Obama
- Legislation that will write into law President Obama's Feed the Future initiative and a new food aid program is headed to the White House for his signature.
Agri-Pulse: House chairman: Food for Peace protected from change
- The chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee assured Agriculture Chairman Mike Conaway Tuesday night that legislation authorizing a new food aid program can't be used to force changes in the way Food for Peace operates.
AgWeb: U.K. Farmland's Bull Run Is Over After Brexit Puts Subsidies in Doubt
- Farmland prices, which began falling in late 2015, should drop or at best stagnate in the next six to 12 months on concern about the industry’s future as the U.K. prepares to exit the European Union, said Simon Gooderham, who focuses on rural property at estate agent Cheffins.
World-Grain.com: Uncertainties influence grain market
- Unpredictability was a common theme at the 2016 International Grains Council (IGC) Conference, held June 14 in London, England as speakers discussed uncertainty coming from every direction and analyzed developments in producing and consuming countries.
TASS: Russian Agriculture Ministry opposes return to full cooperation with Turkey
- Russia’s Agriculture Ministry opposes resumption of Turkish food imports to Russia to the full extent, because the agriculture sector received a certain impetus to development after Turkish food supplies were restricted.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
KLCC: Appellate Judge Says Groups Can Challenge Oregon Wolf De-listing
- Conservation groups have gotten the go-ahead to challenge wolf de-listing in Oregon. a state court of appeals judge says the lawsuit can go forward despite recent legislation.
Greeneville Sun: USDA Head Points To Progress, Urges More Conservation To Slow Pollution
- USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack championed the progress made by both regulators and farmers to curb agriculture-related water pollution but still called for increased conservation efforts from each of the 50 states.
Des Moines Register: Cleaner farming is happening every day across Iowa
- (Letter) I agree with the article that "'the smart people of Iowa' can find cleaner ways to farm that remain profitable.”
Capital Press: Conservation district fights farmland development
- A renewed move by Oregon’s Clackamas County to designate more land for future industrial and commercial development prompted an unusual response from the county’s Soil and Water Conservation District.
Naples News: Gov. Scott asks Obama to declare state of emergency for thick algae blooms that threaten coasts
- If Obama approves Scott's request, it could free up federal cash and resources the state can use to help address a thick layer algae that has coated coastal areas along Martin and St. Lucie counties on the East Coast.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
NBC News: Trans, Immigrant Farmworkers Peel Back 'Layers of Invisibility'
- "You need to talk to more women like us," Valery tells Flora. She is insistent that Flora know her rights. At the moment, they're seated in a conference room of the California Rural Legal Assistance (CRLA) office in Salinas, California.
Farms.com: Guilty of forced labor on Ohio farm, man gets 15 years
- A man who smuggled Guatemalan teenagers into the U.S. and forced them to work on an Ohio egg farm was sentenced in Toledo last week to 15 years in prison.
AL.com: Alabama Senators Jeff Sessions, Richard Shelby urge halt to immigration facilities in Baldwin County
- U.S. Sens. Richard Shelby and Jeff Sessions, in a joint letter to three top federal officials, criticized the Obama Administration's proposal to consider two Baldwin County Naval air fields as temporary facilities to house unaccompanied youths who enter the U.S. illegally.
Hechinger Report: How one Mississippi community copes with influx of Hispanic students
- It’s Cinco de Mayo in Christy Crotwell’s class, and Luis Antonio Hernandez is reading the first-graders a story about the holiday’s origins. He reads each page twice — once in English, once in Spanish — and the students give him their full attention. One kid wears a large sombrero in honor of the occasion.
Agri-Pulse: Cargill selling US ag-retail business to Agrium
- Cargill has agreed to sell its 18 ag-retail outlets in the U.S. to Calgary-based Agrium, the largest retail seller of crop inputs in North America. The outlets, located in Nebraska, South Dakota, Minnesota, Indiana and Michigan, have annual revenues of over $150 million, Agrium said in a release.
Des Moines Register: Prestage picks Wright County for $240M pork plant
- Prestage Farms will build a $240 million pork processing plant in Wright County, Iowa, the company announced Tuesday.
CBS/AP: Court backs jail for Iowa egg executives in salmonella case
- A father and son whose Iowa-based egg production company caused a massive 2010 salmonella outbreak can be required to serve jail time for misdemeanor food safety violations, a divided appeals court ruled Wednesday.
Politico: Hillary Clinton’s Rust Belt Ambassador
- A member of the Agriculture Committee, he was part of the conference committee that negotiated the 2014 farm bill.
Forbes: The Next Phase For Agriculture Technology
- The opportunity to bring agriculture, a $7.8 trillion industry representing 10% of global GDP, into the modern age has caught the attention of a growing number of investors globally.
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