Daily Harvest -- 7/15/2016
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse Daybreak for July 15, 2016
- Donald Trump has picked his running mate and it’s Indiana Gov. Mike Pence, according to multiple reports. Also: USDA already at work on GMO labeling rule; Report: Clinton’s views on biotech vary; FY2017 budgets face uncertain future
Agri-Pulse: Washington Week in Review: House passes GMO labeling
- Phil Brasher and Spencer Chase break down the events of the past week and look at the path forward for the GMO labeling legislation in this week's video.
Agri-Pulse: Historic GMO labeling compromise clears Congress
- In a sweeping victory for farm groups, food companies and the biotech industry, the House voted overwhelmingly today to clear legislation that will prevent states from requiring on-package labeling of GMOs.
Agri-Pulse: Opinion: Growers shouldn't need a law degree to understand their data terms agreements
- (Opinion) Pete Clark, Head of Ag Connections, calls for "cooperation to protect and nurture our most valuable asset - growers' trust. Without their trust, it won't matter how much venture capital floods into the ag tech space. Trust is at the core of success in agriculture."
Washington Post: The Daily 202: Keep an eye on Tom Vilsack in Hillary Clinton’s veepstakes
- There’s increasing chatter among some tip-top Democrats that Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack could be emerging as a real contender late in the process. He’s a sleeper, but he has several qualities that make him appealing to the Clintons.
Bloomberg: Largest U.S. Offshore Wind Farm Planned in New York Waters
- The Long Island Power Authority plans to approve a 90 megawatt wind farm off the coast of New York that would become the largest in the U.S. when completed.
The Hill: GOP energy negotiator accuses Senate chair of 'bizarre' promise
- A House chairman assigned to an energy bill conference committee said it was “a little bit bizarre” to hear a Senate Republican promise to cut provisions from the bill that could earn a presidential veto.
Pittsburgh Business Times: Clean-energy jobs up 15 percent in Pennsylvania
- A new report counts 66,000 clean-energy related jobs in Pennsylvania, up 15 percent from the last study published two years ago.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Bloomberg: Americans Are Buying Gene-Edited Food That's Labeled Non-GMO
- Products made possible through gene-editing have landed on grocery shelves. Whether they’ll stay there is up to shoppers wary of technological tinkering.
Texas Public Radio: Educators Look To Revamp School Lunches At Nutrition Conference In San Antonio
- “How many restaurants do you know that may feed 3,000 meals a day,” asks Cynthia Barton, dietitian for the Northside Independent School District—San Antonio’s largest. “That’s what we do in school lunch, and we do it sometimes in an hour and a half.”
Newsweek: Half of U.S. produce gets thrown out
- Americans throw away almost as much food as they eat because of a “cult of perfection,” deepening hunger and poverty, and inflicting a heavy toll on the environment.
Port Huron Times Herald: Dangerous bill would take food away from needy kids
- (Opinion) A bill recently approved by a U.S. House of Representatives committee would actually hinder the ability of schools to provide nutritious meals to low-income children.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Indian Express: Punjab again under whitefly attack, agriculture department on its toes
- Punjab, for the second year in a row, is grappling to contain white flies from destroying their cotton crops. The most affected block as of now is Fazilka district’s Khuian Sarwar where out of 23,000 acres of land dedicated to cotton, 11, 500 acres is under the whitefly attack. Similarly, in Abohar area, around 12,000 acres of cotton block is under attack.
The Independent: Who is Andrea Leadsom?
- The new Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs in new PM Theresa May's cabinet said she is now “completely persuaded” that climate change is real, according to the energy site Drill and Drop. She reportedly told a parliamentary fracking group in November she had to ask whether it was after accepting the role as an energy minister.
Farming Life: Report shows need need for Irish agriculture to change
- Irish agriculture urgently needs to transition towards producing far healthier food with far lower climate emissions, a new report says.
Al Jazeera: Gaza farmers seek damages for Israel's crop-spraying
- Ibrahim Abu Taaymeh has grown spinach on land in the Gaza Strip for more than a decade. But the Palestinian farmer from Khan Younis, in southern Gaza, says his harvest was destroyed after the Israeli army sprayed an unknown herbicide on lands in the buffer zone near the Israel-Gaza border fence in October 2014.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Agri-Pulse: House EPA-Interior bill targets WOTUS, Clean Power Plan
- The House of Representatives today approved a 2017 spending bill for EPA and the Interior Department that would block many of the Obama administration's signature environmental initiatives, such as the Clean Power Plan and the “waters of the U.S.” rule. The measure passed 231-196, with only three Democrats voting yes.
Smithsonian: New Schemes Pay You to Save Species—But Will They Work?
- The greater sage-grouse is a bird in trouble. Once flourishing across the sagebrush and scrublands of the western United States and Canada, its numbers have plummeted by 98 percent in the past century. Ongoing agricultural and energy development in the West means that the bird will have few options to recover its once-plentiful numbers.
AP: Former Interior head enlisted for California giant tunnels
- California Gov. Jerry Brown has enlisted former Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt to help his massive, $15.7 billion water tunnel proposal clear regulatory and financial hurdles, officials said Thursday.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
USA Today: Clinton vows to expand Obama's immigration executive actions
- Hillary Clinton vowed to expand President Obama’s executive actions on immigration and cast the 2016 presidential election as critical for Latino voters because Donald Trump is the presumptive Republican nominee.
The Californian: Protestors try to disrupt AgTech Summit
- A group of protesters that included Salinas City Councilman José Castañeda attempted to disrupt the Forbes AgTech Summit being held downtown Thursday afternoon. The group of 11 protestor focused their words on Watsonville-based Driscoll’s, the world’s largest distributor of fresh berries — with chants that
included “Boycott Driscoll’s!” and “Shame on you!”
The Californian: Growers seek alternative solutions as labor shortage, rising costs hit
- After attending the panel “Labor’s Next Frontier” at Thursday’s Forbes AgTech Summit in Salinas, Muthart agreed that the agriculture industry overall faces a labor crunch, shrinking land and water supply, and rising costs of doing business.
AP: Cortland County farmer accused of violating child labor laws
- State authorities have charged the owner of a dairy farm in central New York where a 14-year-old was killed last year, crushed under a hydraulic lift.
Indianapolis Star: Indiana Gov. Mike Pence is Donald Trump's VP pick
- IndyStar confirmed shortly after noon Thursday that Trump is planning to announce Pence as his selection for vice president. Several national news outlets, including CNN and ABC News, later reported Trump had offered the post to Pence and he had accepted, ending a weekslong casting call during which Trump vetted a handful of high-profile Republicans.
The Fredericksburg (Va.) Free Lance-Star: Women breaking grass ceiling in agricultural fields
- These days, more women are flocking to agriculture schools for higher education. But they aren’t necessarily heading to the farm.
Bangor Daily News: The barn doors swing open for 27th Open Farm Day
- “In Maine the numbers of farms have been increasing, while in the rest of country the numbers have been declining,” said Samantha Howard, agricultural promotions coordinator for the Maine Department of Agriculture Conservation and Forestry. Today Maine boasts 8,000 farms and “new people are getting into farming every year. We want to encourage that across the board.”
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