Daily Harvest -- 7/23/2015
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: USDA bracing for bigger bird flu outbreak
- The government is gearing up to deal with as many as 500 incidents of avian flu this fall, far more than the number that devastated Midwest producers this spring, says Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.
Agri-Pulse: Iowa in avian flu recovery mode
- (Audio) The worst of the highly pathogenic avian influenza outbreak appears to be behind Iowa, for now.
Agri-Pulse: Teachers honored for planting Ag in school curriculum
- A year ago, none of the students at a K-8 school in Hillsborough County, Florida, had experience with agriculture. But not anymore.
LA Times: San Gabriel Valley quarantine for citrus disease expands
- Agricultural officials have expanded a quarantine in the San Gabriel Valley after discovering several more trees infected with citrus greening disease, a malady that has devastated orchards in Florida, Mexico and Brazil.
Agri-Pulse: Will a flood of Iranian crude oil and low prices hurt or help renewables?
- (Subscriber only) While raising many questions, President Obama's controversial nuclear agreement with Iran has already resulted in at least one tangible impact.
ABC News: As He Heads to Africa, Obama's Electricity Plan in Jeopardy
- As President Barack Obama returns to Africa this week, his signature program to help the continent double its access to electricity is in jeopardy, undermined by Congress' refusal to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank.
Wall Street Journal: Congress Eyes Sales From Nation’s Oil Stockpile for Highway Funding
- Lawmakers are eyeing the Strategic Petroleum Reserve as a piggy bank, but not without controversy.
Wall Street Journal: Diesel Prices Tank Amid Global Glut
- The world is awash in diesel, sending prices plunging below regular gasoline in 21 states and delivering some commuters a rare bounty.
Reuters: Senators unveil wide-ranging energy bill
- Modernizing the electric grid and the emergency petroleum reserve were the cornerstones of a bill unveiled by leaders of the Senate energy committee on Wednesday, showing cross-party consensus on some issues, but the lawmakers failed to agree on whether to repeal the ban on U.S. oil exports.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Agri-Pulse: GMO bill advances to House showdown
- A bill that would block state GMO labeling laws and set up a process for marketing foods as non-GMO has advanced in the House, setting up a final votes on the measure on Thursday.
LA Times: GMO rice could reduce greenhouse gas emissions, study says
- By transferring a barley gene into a rice plant, scientists have created a new variety of rice that produces less methane while still making highly starchy, productive seeds.
Nasdaq: Coke Boosted by Sales of Noncarbonated Drinks
- Coca-Cola Co. showed improvement in the second quarter, fueled not by soda, but by noncarbonated drinks like tea, bottled water and ultra-filtered nutrient-rich milk.
Bloomberg: Campbell to Cut Artificial Flavors, Colors by End of 2018
- Campbell Soup Co. will make all of its North American products without artificial colors or flavors by the end of fiscal 2018, joining a stampede of packaged-food companies moving toward all-natural ingredients.
Eater: Get Ready for All-Day Breakfast at McDonald's Nationwide
- Though operators and franchisees have long complained about the logistics of such an undertaking, McDonald's appears ready to launch all-day breakfast at all of its U.S. units in October.
New York Times: New York Plans $15-an-Hour Minimum Wage for Fast Food Workers
- A panel appointed by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo recommended on Wednesday that the minimum wage be raised for employees of fast-food chain restaurants throughout the state to $15 an hour over the next few years.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Wall Street Journal: France Moves to Placate Farmers With Aid
- The French government scrambled Wednesday to unlock around €600 million ($656 million) for indebted farmers struggling to sell their meat and milk at prices that cover productions costs.
Reuters: Zimbabwe Farmers Fear Winter of Hunger After Poor Tobacco Crop
- Thousands of small-scale farmers in Zimbabwe fear they will be going hungry this winter after abandoning traditional staples like maize, sorghum and groundnuts for tobacco, a cash crop known locally in this southern African nation as "green gold".
Reuters: Iran slaps import duty on wheat, barley, hurting hope for fresh trade
- Iran has imposed import duties on wheat and barley hurting hope for more trade after the country's nuclear deal with Western powers.
New York Times: Livestock Farmers Attack Supermarket
- (Video) Protesters in Brittany demonstrated against the retail prices of meat, continuing weeks of actions intended to draw a response from the government.
Washington Post: In quirky Hong Kong voting system, fishermen play key role
- Fishing and farming make up less than 1 percent of Hong Kong’s $274 billion economy but command 60 votes in the leadership committee, far more than groups or industries with much greater economic or social significance.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Agri-Pulse: Survey: Hunters, anglers cast support for EPA's Clean Water Rule
- Four of every five hunters and anglers surveyed nationwide approve of the Obama administration's new rule that extends Clean Water Act protections to wetlands and streams.
San Francisco Chronicle: Environmental groups join surge of lawsuits against EPA rule
- Nine environmental conservation groups have joined the surge of states and businesses suing the federal government over a new water regulation.
Toledo Blade: Lawmakers want programs to curb Great Lakes farm pollution
- Two members of Congress introduced legislation today that encourages states in the Great Lakes region to develop voluntary programs aimed at reducing farm pollution that causes harmful algae blooms.
Wall Street Journal: The Bees Are Safe—Now Lift This Pesticide Ban
- (Opinion) Brussels banned a class of pesticides to avert a ‘beepocalypse’ that wasn’t happening. Now bugs threaten crops, and farmers may need harsher chemicals.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
Business Insider: Study: Immigration from Mexico to the US has dropped 57 percent since the mid-2000s
- Even as immigration remains a hot topic in the U.S. presidential campaign, the number of people emigrating from Mexico to the United States, legally and illegally, has dropped sharply in recent years, research published Wednesday shows.
The Hill: Immigration hardliner says he’ll support sanctuary cities bill
- Rep. Steve King (R-Iowa) said he assured House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) in a Monday phone call that he will support a bill expected on the House floor Thursday to withhold federal law enforcement grant funding for state or local governments that don’t cooperate with federal immigration authorities.
Business Insider: An industrial behemoth just delivered bad news about the global economy
- Caterpillar, one of the world's largest big machine manufacturers, just disclosed 3-month rolling machine sales data that showed sales were down everywhere in June.
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