Daily Harvest -- 8/16/2016
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: Land values, rental rates have to come down, report says
- More affordable cropland isn't just something that could improve producer margins; it's something that is an absolute necessity, according to a new report.
Des Moines Register: State to consider $11.5 million in tax credits for Prestage project
- Iowa economic development leaders will consider providing about $11.5 million in tax credits for Prestage Farm’s $240 million proposed hog processing plant near Eagle Grove.
Holton Recorder: Holton HS alum Pat Roberts returns to talk agriculture, other topics
- In spite of presidential election year politics, the need for immigration reform and discussions over how to fight terrorism and the Zika virus, U.S. Senator and Holton High School alumnus Pat Roberts reminded a group of Holton-area residents on Thursday that his primary focus remains agriculture.
Des Moines Register: Bumper crop tumbling corn, soybean prices
- Another bumper crop is driving corn and soybean prices ever lower, potentially shorting Iowa farmers of nearly $2 billion in revenue and leading to a third consecutive year of income losses.
OilPrice.com: Renewable Energy Storage Could Be Worth $90 Billion Per Year
- The biggest hurdle renewables now have to overcome is not the cost of production, but the curse of intermittency. Where does the power come from when the wind doesn’t blow or the sun doesn’t shine?
FoxNews: Threat to raise taxes on wind energy could blow huge Wyoming project
- The state is considering raising the tax in a maneuver critics say could put the industry in jeopardy.
AP: Work at first US offshore wind farm is in its final phases
- Construction on the nation's first offshore wind farm is in its final phases. Deepwater Wind's five-turbine wind farm off Block Island, Rhode Island, is expected to be making electricity this fall.
AgWired: Ethanol Report from 2016 Sturgis
- (Audio) The Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) once again partnered with the Buffalo Chip Campground to host the 76th annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in Sturgis, S.D. RFA Vice President of Industry Relations Robert White was joined at this year’s event by association board members Dana Siefkes-Lewis of Redfield Energy in South Dakota and Chuck Woodside of KAAPA Ethanol in Nebraska. In this Ethanol Report, they all talk about the importance of educating motorcyclists about using ethanol in their engines.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Idaho Press-Tribune: University's new technology blossoming in agriculture
- Two projects are being developed at Northwest Nazarene University. One is the IdaBOT, which is a robot that can move on its own through vineyards and orchards, the other is a multi-spectral camera, which captures multiple color wavelengths that would aid in counting fruit blossoms to estimate crop yield.
Centre Daily Times: Area students bring education to Grange agriculture exhibits
- The Grange Fair is more than just a chance to camp out, see some farm animals and take in some good food.
Washington Post: Foundation acquires farm to provide fresh produce to D.C.’s poorest areas
- The foundation plans to distribute seasonal vegetables such as kale, chard, broccoli and squash to early childhood centers and schools, develop an educational program about food, and sell some of its produce through a mobile market in the neighborhoods.
BloombergBNA: FDA Revamps Rules for Food Ingredients Recognized as Safe
- The Food and Drug Administration issued final rules today updating how the agency determines a substance used in food to be “generally recognized as safe,” known by the shorthand GRAS.
AP: Donors Seek to Help Boy Selling Stuffed Animal for Food
- People across the country want to help a 7-year-old Ohio boy who told a police officer he was trying to sell a stuffed animal to buy food, because he hadn't eaten in several days.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Agri-Pulse: Gainesville to Havana: Enhancing U.S.-Cuban agriculture through research, collaboration, and investment
- (Opinion) Jack Payne, the University of Florida's senior vice president for agriculture and natural resources, says, "It's in our national interest to tap into Cuban expertise on crops that Florida and Cuba have in common."
Agri-Pulse: US pork exports show signs of life
- (Audio) Depending on how you look at it, pork exports were either up or down in June compared to last year's figures. Vice president of the National Pork Board Becca Nepple discusses the figures.
Daily Mail: Australian dairy farmers 'slaughtering 700 cows a week'
- The price of the raw product has plunged since May and farmers, many having to repay their co-operative sellers like Murray Goulburn and Frontera tens of thousands of dollars, have been drastically reducing stock by selling to abattoirs along with suffering serious mental health issues.
Sputnik International: Baltic States' Agriculture, Fisheries Face Collapse After Loss of Russian Market
- Last week marked the second anniversary of Russia's introduction of agricultural sanctions against Europe. The measure, introduced in response to Western sanctions against Moscow over the crisis in Ukraine, led to tens of billions of euros in losses for producers. Statistics show that they hit the Baltics particularly hard.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Agri-Pulse: Court gives EPA firm deadline on chlorpyrifos
- The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals has given the Environmental Protection Agency an additional three months to decide whether to allow continued use of chlorpyrifos.
Sacramento Bee: Drought costs California farms $600 million, but impact eases
- The latest annual survey by UC Davis researchers shows that the reasonably rainy winter has eased the effects of the drought, even though considerable shortages persist in crucial areas of the San Joaquin Valley.
Washington Post: California is in flames right now, with fires fueled by historic drought
- The state has nine active wildfires as large as 25 acres or more, including the massive Clayton fire north of San Francisco that forced nearly 1,500 residents to flee their homes after it erupted Saturday in dry conditions created by the state’s extreme drought.
Washington Examiner: Obama readies final rule in climate agenda
- The Obama administration is expected to issue the last rule in the president's far-reaching climate change agenda as soon as Tuesday, setting new greenhouse gas and fuel efficiency standards for big-rig trucks.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
The Guardian: Fruits of labor: sunny California is no paradise for farm workers
- There is dust, bee stings, flash floods which turn the earth swampy, and the pesticides and chemicals – 39 by one count – such as nitrogen fertilizer which gives Veronica Villano, 28, a veteran Ventura County raspberry picker, headaches. The pay is $10 an hour -- not enough to cover the rent on her family’s studio apartment in Oxnard let alone contribute to a nest egg for the baby that Villano, eight-months pregnant, is expecting.
Merced Sun-Star: Proposed legislation could slash local farm worker income
- (Opinion) During peak season, our field workers can earn from $17 to $44 per hour based on their productivity. For crops that offer straight hourly wages, I pay considerably more than minimum wage; this includes pay to shop hands, tractor drivers and irrigators. For all these employees, peak-season earnings help balance out annual incomes.
Modesto Bee: Farming hugely profitable, so pay workers OT they deserve
- (Letter to the editor) Some propose that any increase in labor costs would push growers into financially unfeasible situations, but according to the latest study from the California Department of Food and Agriculture, profits for the state's ag industry are at an all-time high with an output estimated at $54 billion in 2014.
Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Roswell, Ga., OKs couple’s plan to take land back to agriculture
- The Roswell City Council has approved a couple’s unusual request for the city to rezone their land from suburban residential back to agricultural so they can set up a small “urban farm.”
U.S. News & World Report: Florida Locals Bugged by Proposed Release of Genetically Modified Mosquitoes
- Locals in the Florida Keys are concerned about the prospect of their community becoming a testing ground for the release of thousands of genetically modified mosquitoes marketed as a solution to the Zika virus, and plan to protest the potential experiment Tuesday.
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