Daily Harvest -- 9/3/2014
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: USDA urges producers to act on disaster programs
- USDA is urging producers eligible for disaster programs to take steps necessary to take part in those programs before congressionally-mandated decrease in funding takes effect.
Agri-Pulse: Farmland values are slipping this year
- (Audio) Concern about lower commodity prices this year is leading to concern about lower farmland values.
Kansas City Star: Peterson: Witt assured of agriculture panel spot
- The top Democrat on the U.S. House Agriculture Committee on Tuesday said former Federal Emergency Management Agency Director James Lee Witt is assured a spot on the panel if he wins his bid for a south Arkansas congressional seat this fall.
Bloomberg: Record Crops Spur Exits From Agriculture Investment Funds
- The investment binge in U.S. agriculture funds has ended as record crops and the promise of improving meat supplies send prices plunging.
Brownfield: Vilsack says safety net is strong
- Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack says the USDA is on schedule with implementation of the crop-related commodity programs in the farm bill.
DTN: Senators Want GIPSA Policy Limits Removed
- Thirteen senators have written the leaders of the Senate Appropriations Committee asking that they eliminate policy riders on the funding bill for USDA over livestock and poultry marketing rules.
USA Today: Agriculture equipment sales decline in 2014
- Farmers aren't buying or trading in the pricey equipment because of lower commodity prices and a 95% reduction in a federal tax break that has traditionally benefited the sector.
Des Moines Register: Iowa Corn Growers PAC endorses Bruce Braley
- The Iowa Corn Growers Association, one of the state's most influential farm groups, announced Tuesday its political action committee had endorsed Democrat Bruce Braley in his campaign for the U.S. Senate against Republican state Sen. Joni Ernst.
San Francisco Chronicle: Netherlands king to attend ethanol plant opening
- The opening of one of the nation's first commercial size cellulosic ethanol plants is drawing royalty along with top federal and state officials to Emmetsburg.
FOOD & NUTRITION
New York Times: The Hot Pursuit of Kale and Its Trendy Friends, and Rumors of Shortages
- With today’s tastes running to chia and the so-called ancient grains, like amaranth, flax and quinoa, there are concerns about some shortages.
Reuters: U.S. GMO labeling foes triple spending in first half of this year over 2013
- Opponents of mandatory labeling for foods made with genetically modified organisms spent more than $27 million in the first six months of this year on GMO-related lobbying, roughly three times their spending in all of 2013, according to an analysis released Wednesday.
The Hill: ‘To-do list’ on food safety grows longer for agencies
- The largest food safety overhaul in generations is being starved of funding needed to enforce a host of new regulations for factories, farms and importers, safety advocates warn.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
The Economist: Eat apples to annoy Putin
- Russia’s import ban on Polish fruit and vegetables will leave Poland with a big surplus of apples by the end of the year. Last year 677,000 tonnes of Polish apples went to Russia, accounting for 56% of Poland’s apple exports.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Los Angeles Times: Chance of 'megadrought' in U.S. Southwest now 50%, study concludes
- The chance of a "megadrought" gripping the Southwest for more than 30 years has increased to 50%, scientists say, which means bad news for California's already parched landscape.
Washington Post: Small vs. large: Which size farm is better for the planet?
- The vision of small, diversified farms feeding the world, one community at a time, is a popular one. But is it a viable one?
Agri-Pulse: Novak tapped to lead National Corn Growers Association
- The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) announced that Chris Novak will leave the helm of the National Pork Board to become the organization's next chief executive officer, taking the place of 14-year veteran Rick Tolman, who earlier this year announced his intention to retire from the organization.
Philly.com: In New Jersey, disputes over use of farms to host events
- The dispute is one of several that have flared across the state as deed-restricted farms and wineries have been prevented from holding events on their land by the State Agricultural Development Committee and state and county boards, which enforce limits on preserved tracts.
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