Daily Harvest -- 8/23/2016
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse Daybreak for Aug. 23, 2016
- (Audio) Louisianans are still waiting for the water to recede, cleaning up the damage, taking stock of their losses and trying to salvage what they can from the devastation of recent flooding. Also: Japanese agriculture officials arrive for a visit; Trump and immigration; USDA and trade.
Agri-Pulse: Weathering a downturn: Agricultural bankers can help in challenging times
- (Opinion) Michael R. Hein, vice president of Liberty Trust & Savings Bank in Durant, Iowa, and chairman of the American Bankers Association's Agricultural and Rural Bankers Committee, says "the cycle of agriculture is one fraught with swings that test even the best of farmers and ranchers." He advises farmers to "be proactive in reaching out to your lender after preparing your plan and budget to discuss your strategy for weathering the downturn, and we will work to assist as many farmers and ranchers as possible."
Agri-Pulse: Looking ahead to September budget action
- (Audio) When Congress returns to Washington after Labor Day, look for a continuing resolution to keep the government running.
Wall Street Journal: U.S. Farmers See Possible Benefits in Syngenta Deal
- Some farmers prefer Syngenta selling itself to ChemChina versus merging with a direct competitor and further shrinking the field.
Australian Broadcasting Corp.: Anti-fracking letter reveals divide within Northern Territory cattle industry
- The owners of around 50 cattle stations in the Northern Territory have signed an open letter advertisement against hydraulic fracturing, also known as fracking, five days out from Saturday's election.
AP: Duke Energy, NC agency disputing fine for coal ash pollution
- The nation's largest electric company is negotiating with North Carolina's environment agency over a $6.6 million fine to punish Duke Energy for a big spill of liquefied coal ash.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Bloomberg BNA: USDA Loosens Rules on Labeling Meat, Poultry as Non-GMO
- USDA will begin allowing meat, poultry and egg producers to put labels such as “contains no GMO ingredients” or “derived from beef fed no GMO feed” on products that are not made with genetically engineered ingredients or animal feed.
Food Safety News: BPI drops some defendants from ‘pink slime’ civil action
- ABC news reporters Diane Sawyer and Jim Avila and American Broadcasting Companies Inc. remain as defendants in $1.2 billion lawsuit brought by Beef Products Inc. in Dakota Dunes, SD. However, the beef company that pioneered the product dubbed “pink slime” has agreed to drop its claims against ABC News Inc. and two former USDA scientists.
Engadget: Edible milk-based film preserves food better than plastic
- U.S. Department of Agriculture researchers have pioneered a drastically more efficient covering...and it's made out of milk.
N.Y. Times: A More Egalitarian Approach to Locavore Eating
- (Editorial) A new hub should make it easier for more New York farmers to sell to local stores, outdoor markets, restaurants, bakeries and schools in the city, according to Marcel Van Ooyen, president of GrowNYC.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Agri-Pulse: US panel clears ChemChina-Syngenta deal
- The Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. has cleared ChemChina's proposed $43 billion takeover of Syngenta - removing one of the biggest potential obstacles to the deal.
Politifact: Pat Toomey’s shifting stance on the Trans-Pacific Partnership
- Sen. Pat Toomey has historically been one of the most pro-trade lawmakers in the Senate. The Pennsylvania Republican -- now in the political fight of his life in an attempt to keep his seat -- even wrote a book in 2009 called The Road to Prosperity, which touted the benefits of free trade. But last week he changed his tune.
CNBC: Economists see Clinton, Johnson better suited to manage economy than Trump
- Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump may be trailing in second place behind Hillary Clinton among voters in polls, but among the nation's economists he's fallen into third place, behind Libertarian Party nominee Gary Johnson.
WBAA (Purdue): Indiana Ag Lines Up For Trans-Pacific Partnership, While Manufacturing Splits
- The agreement has support from most manufacturing business owners -- as well as support from another of Indiana's most trade-reliant industries: agriculture.
AP: French farmers protest against diving dairy prices
- French farmers are occupying an intersection outside the headquarters of dairy giant Lactalis and crying for help as they struggle to compete with cheaper countries in Europe’s single market.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Bismarck Tribune: Pilot project takes on ag-friendly wetland preservation
- Bunches of cattails stick up like an island in the middle of Denny Ova’s stubble field north of Cleveland, N.D. Since last spring, Ova has been participating in the North Dakota Working Wetlands Pilot Project, which pays farmers not to alter small, seasonal wetlands in the fields they farm.
Barre-Montpelier Times-Argus: High court upholds wetland violation
- The Vermont Supreme Court ruled Friday that brush-hogging a field does not earn an agricultural exemption to wetland regulations.
The Verge: Uprooted: how climate change may kick off an artificial migration of trees
- The strategy that might save whitebark pines in the long run is one that’s been discussed for decades among ecologists and is only now gaining traction: assisted migration. That basically means planting tree seeds in areas where they will be able to survive in the future.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
Agri-Pulse: John Deere announces layoffs following earnings decline
- Agriculture and construction equipment giant John Deere today announced layoffs at two Iowa manufacturing plants, just days after the company reported profit for its fiscal third quarter fell from the year-earlier period.
Fox News: Trump releases first major TV ad, focuses on immigration
- Donald Trump on Friday released his first general election television ad which draws a dramatic contrast between his strict approach on immigration issues and what he claims his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton would do if she were in charge, which he boils down to as -- “more of the same, only worse.”
AP: California lawmakers revive farmworker overtime bill
- California's state Senate on Monday revived a bill that would make the state the first in the United States to give farmworkers the same overtime pay as people who work in other industries, a last-ditch effort to reverse a nearly 80-year-old practice of exempting field hands from wage rules.
Capital Press: Southwestern Idaho farmers raise pay to keep workers
- “It’s gotten really bad; it’s a tough labor market,” said Meridian farmer Richard Durant. “There just aren’t very many workers out there.”
Agri-Pulse: USDA cattle report meets market expectations
- (Audio) Late last week, the Department of Agriculture released the Cattle on Feed report that was largely in line with industry expectations.
Central Maine.com: Maine Farm Days, which begin Wednesday, is for farmers and the public alike
- While the free, two-day event is on a dairy farm, it draws farmers of all kinds — dairy, beef, vegetable — to Clinton to check out new technology and demonstrations.
Detroit Free Press: Michigan farmers enjoy state's diverse agriculture
- Michigan has bragging rights to about 300 different agricultural commodities and is second only to California for its agricultural diversity, said Jeremy Nagel, a spokesman for Michigan Farm Bureau.
CNN: Why are India's farmers killing themselves?
- Harsha Vadlamani's photographs of drought in Maharashtra, India, which were taken between March and May of this year, stand as evidence of the human toll of climate change.
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