Daily Harvest -- 7/20/2015
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: Washington Week Ahead: House to debate GMOs, Senate panel moving tax extenders
- The national debate over genetically engineered foods goes to the House floor this week with lawmakers scheduled to debate a bill that would bar states from requiring labels on foods containing GMOs.
Agri-Pulse: Open Mic with Rep. Rob Bishop
- (Audio) The Utah Republican minces no words in describing the Obama Administration as the “bully regulation machine” and in this interview discusses his concerns about federal regulations on private and public lands, water supply, and endangered species.
Agri-Pulse: EPA Chief answers corn grower's questions on WOTUS
- (Audio) EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy came before one of the many organizations that have joined in a lawsuit over implementation of the new Clean Water rule, which became known to many as the “waters of the United States”, or WOTUS rule.
Agri-Pulse: House Ag leaders: GMO labeling bill does not preempt cultivation bans
- Proponents of a bill that would bar states from requiring the labeling of food made with genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are attempting to clear away confusion about the intent of the legislation, which is expected on the House floor next week.
Lansing State Journal: Michigan farmer fights state over milk inspections
- In a rare move, Michigan food safety officials have asked a circuit court judge to shut down a Michigan dairy farm that it says is selling milk products without a license — products the state says could endanger the public through deadly foodborne illness.
Wall Street Journal: Syngenta’s Refusal to Negotiate With Monsanto Irks Shareholders
- Syngenta plans a series of meetings with investors as it contends with frustration from some shareholders over its rejection of a roughly $45 billion takeover effort by rival agribusiness giant Monsanto Co.
Washington Post: Va. grape production doesn’t keep pace with winery growth
- Grape production in Virginia hasn’t kept pace with the growth of wineries, creating a shortage that has driven up prices for wineries, wine producers and experts said.
Kansas City Star: Poultry farmers recovering from bird flu have many questions
- Dave Rettig, president of Rembrandt Foods in Spirit Lake, Iowa, which lost 8 million egg-laying hens, said the disease struck quickly and it could return in the fall when birds are migrating.
Reuters: Oil edges lower as Saudi crude exports fall, U.S. cuts drill rigs
- Oil prices edged lower on Monday as data showed Saudi Arabian exports fell to the lowest in five months despite record output, while a resurgence in U.S. drilling activity seen earlier this month seemed to fizzle out.
Reuters: Australia's war on wind farms threatens biggest renewable project
- Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott's hostility to "visually awful" wind farms has sent a chill through the industry and could jeopardize the country's biggest renewable energy project, a $2 billion-plus wind and solar plant in the country's north.
CNBC: Will Asia disrupt energy financing?
- Faced with a yawning energy deficit in years ahead and the need to protect against climate change, Asia is looking for fresh ways to finance its shift toward renewables.
The Western Producer: Prairie ethanol sector hits tough times
- A Saskatchewan ethanol plant has shut down because of low fuel prices, high feedstock costs and the loss of government incentives.
Sioux City Journal: Jeb Bush would end fuel rule that aids Iowa ethanol industry
- Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush on Monday again asserted a position that could give him trouble with some Iowa voters, as he supports an end to a federal rule that helps the ethanol industry.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Wall Street Journal: N.Y. Panel Is Set to Propose $15 Fast-Food Wage
- New York state’s fast-food wage board on Wednesday is expected to recommend raising the fast-food minimum wage to $15 an hour, and the state’s labor commissioner is expected to approve that recommendation, according to a person familiar with the board’s plans.
Seattle Times: New fleet stirs the food-truck pot
- But Biscuit Box isn’t just another Seattle food truck. It’s part of a fleet operated by Mobile Mavens, a Seattle company owned by Bon Appétit Management.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Kansas City Star: US, Cuba to reopen embassies Monday after 54 years
- The last time the United States and Cuba had diplomatic relations, Dwight Eisenhower was in the White House, Elvis Presley’s “Are You Lonesome Tonight?” topped the charts and a new dance craze, the Twist, was sweeping the country.
Wall Street Journal: As Embassies Open, a Further Cuban Thaw Faces Hurdles in Congress
- The new regulations took effect in January, but Congress will have to act to fully lift the trade and travel embargoes. Most U.S. companies are currently prohibited from doing business in Cuba and traveling there from the U.S. as a tourist remains illegal.
Wall Street Journal: Dodd Frank Creators on Wall Street Reform, Five Years Later
- The Dodd-Frank regulatory overhaul, the most sweeping financial legislation in a generation, turns five this week. Debate over the law’s impact continues to rage. Proponents say it made the financial system safer by making banks less risky. Detractors say the law has hurt smaller banks and hamstrung the economy.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Los Angeles Times: Shrinking Colorado River is a growing concern for Yuma farmers — and millions of water users
- The Colorado River begins as snowmelt in the Rocky Mountains and ends 1,450 miles south in Mexico after making a final sacrifice to the United States: water for the farm fields in this powerhouse of American produce.
Washington Post: California drought makes quest for water a consuming grind
- For a few days now, they had been without running water in the fifth year of a California drought that had finally come to them. First it had devastated the orchards where Gamboa and his wife had once picked grapes. Then it drained the rivers where they had fished and the shallow wells in rural migrant communities.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
San Diego Union-Tribune: Immigration bill would aid CA farmworkers
- A bill that would grant work permits and temporary deportation relief to farmworkers living in California illegally has cleared another hurdle in the Legislature, potentially setting a national precedent in the broader debate over immigration reform.
Sacramento Bee: Sacramento’s new Mexican consul to help drought-stricken farmworkers
- With California’s historic drought evaporating the livelihood of thousands of Mexican migrants, Mexico will start offering them emergency rent assistance, clothing, food and even a plane ticket back home, said the region’s new consul general in her first major media interview.
Agri-Pulse: Clinton, Sanders grab momentum as 2016 Democrats take stage together for first time
- The five declared Democratic candidates for president of the United States echoed similar themes in speeches during the Democratic Party Hall of Fame dinner here on Friday- the first time all had been together on the same stage. Raising the minimum wage, free college tuition, women's rights, clean energy and rebuilding the middle class were mentioned frequently.
Agri-Pulse: Clinton takes her 2016 fight back to home turf in Arkansas
- In her return to Arkansas for the annual Jefferson-Jackson Day dinner, Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton sounded themes of populism and equality, and said her administration would prosecute “individuals as well as corporations” who commit financial crimes.
Washington Post: DC State Fair to feature marijuana growing contest
- Participants in the pot-growing contest will be judged on appearance, odor and touch — including whether the stem is sticky and whether it bends or snaps.
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