Daily Harvest -- 8/7/2014
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: In farm bill update, Vilsack confirms delay on new USDA trade post
- (Subscriber only) Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack provided a six-month update on USDA's progress implementing the 2014 Farm Bill, confirming that a report outlining how the agency would reorganize to accommodate a new Under Secretary for Trade will be delayed.
Agri-Pulse: Agreement that farm bill implementation is going well
- (Audio) Farm bill implementation is moving forward, according to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. Giving a six month progress report, Vilsack said USDA has made good progress in several areas. Rep. Collin Peterson, D-Minn., agreed the implementation is going well, despite the complexities.
Agri-Pulse: USDA announces addition of wood products to BioPreferred Program
- The USDA issued a final rule that eliminates restrictions on mature market wood products and other materials in the BioPreferred Program.
Agri-Pulse: Candy prices rise while sugar prices stay flat, producers say
- Consumers are paying more for their favorite candy bars despite the fact that sugar prices have remained relatively flat over the past 30 years, according to a report released today by the American Sugar Alliance (ASA), a sugar producers group, at the 31st International Sweetener Symposium in Stowe, Vermont.
Agri-Pulse: Minnesota candidates speak at Farmfest
- Several candidates vying to represent Minnesota constituents had the chance to address the public as an August 12 primary looms.
Agri-Pulse: Is USDA holding farmersˆ wheat harvest hostage?
- (Subscriber only) It's not your typical definition of hostage-taking, but some wheat growers are starting to feel like “captives” because USDA officials won't inspect their harvest at a key northwestern port that serves as an export gateway to Asian markets.
Associated Press: Barges May Sail Down Mississippi by Weekend
- Federal officials hope a massive effort to remove silt and sand deposits from the bed of the Mississippi River in Minnesota will have cleared a path for hundreds of tied-up barges carrying millions of dollars in cargo to resume their trips downstream over the weekend.
Economic Times: Boeing launches plan to turn tobacco into jet fuel
- US aerospace giant Boeing said on Wednesday it was working with South African Airways and a Dutch biofuel company to make jet fuel from tobacco seeds.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Washington Post: The rise of the American almond craze in one nutty chart
- The country's appetite for almonds has grown by more than 220 percent since 2005--far faster than demand for pecans, walnuts, macadamias, pistachios, cashews, or peanuts.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Agri-Pulse: Russia targets U.S. farm products with retaliatory sanctions
- Russia intends to ban all U.S. agricultural products, which last year totaled about $1.2 billion, as well as fruits and nuts from the European Union, in retaliation for sanctions imposed on Moscow over the Ukrainian crisis, the country's agricultural watchdog said.
Agri-Pulse: Lawmakers oppose suspension agreement in Mexico sugar dumping case
- (Subscriber only) A bipartisan group of 63 U.S. representatives have written to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker voicing their opposition to negotiating a suspension agreement with Mexico in the antidumping and countervailing duty cases on Mexican sugar imports filed by U.S. sugar producers.
Agri-Pulse: Vilsack announces new partners in U.S.-Africa trade initiative
- Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced four new partners in the Global Open Data for Agriculture and Nutrition (GODAN) program and up to $1 billion in export credit guarantees to boost trade between the U.S. and Africa during the first-ever Africa Leaders Summit in Washington this week.
Reuters: Russia bans all U.S. food, EU fruit and vegetables in sanctions response; NATO fears invasion
- Russia will ban all imports of food from the United States and all fruit and vegetables from Europe, the state news agency reported on Wednesday, a sweeping response to Western sanctions imposed over its support for rebels in Ukraine.
Los Angeles Times: When the U.S. and Russia tussle, American chickens often pay
- In response to U.S.-led sanctions against Russia, Moscow is banning imports of U.S. chicken. The order issued Wednesday is expected to block access to America’s third biggest poultry export market for a year.
Wall Street Journal: Brazilian Presidential Candidates Propose Improvements for Agribusiness
- Brazil's leading presidential candidates presented their proposals Wednesday to the agribusiness sector, a major source of Brazilian exports, as the campaign heats up ahead of the October vote.
Bloomberg: AGCO Sees African Sales Jumping on Agriculture Investment
- AGCO Corp. (AGCO), the manufacturer of combine harvesters and Massey Ferguson tractors, plans to increase sales in Africa by almost a third next year as entrepreneurs from the continent and elsewhere invest in agriculture.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Omaha World Herald: Wildlife refuges phasing out GMO crops, pesticides
- National wildlife refuges around the country are phasing out genetically modified crops and a class of pesticides related to nicotine in programs meant to provide food for wildlife.
New York Times: Dry California Fights Illegal Use of Water for Cannabis
- Amid the state’s crippling drought, many communities are fighting not the mere cultivation of cannabis — which is legal in the state, though subject to myriad restrictions — but the growers’ use of water.
Wall Street Journal: Kansas's Earmark Shuckers
- The big underreported story of Tuesday's GOP primaries is how two Kansas spending reformers brushed back challenges from corporate rent-seekers. Their victories ought to give Republicans in Congress the confidence to buck crony capitalists.
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