Daily Harvest -- 9/30/2015
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: Vilsack keynotes global crop insurance conference
- The International Association of Agricultural Production Insurers, an organization with members in 30 countries, held its 33rd meeting in Kansas City this week to discuss the challenge of feeding a growing population and the role that crop insurance places in that task.
International Business Times: US Farm Economy: How Globalization Soured Milk Market For American Dairy Farmers
- Through July, U.S. dairy exports were down 33 percent by value compared with a year ago, and 13 percent by volume. The price of whole milk powder, which peaked in February 2014 at over $5,000 per metric ton, hasn’t been above $3,000 for nearly a year, and in mid-September stood at $2,175, according USDA.
Fox News: Iowans who sought to draft Christie in 2011, back him again
- He's behind in the polls and has spent little time in Iowa of late, but Chris Christie is set to get a major bump in the leadoff caucus state with endorsements from nearly all of the local Republican heavyweights who tried to recruit him to run four years ago.
Washington Post: Va. farmland preservation funding totals nearly $2 million
- With a deadline looming, nearly $2 million in state matching funds is available to Virginia localities for farmland preservation.
Washington Post: Sales of Virginia wine hit new record
- Gov. Terry McAuliffe has sought to position Virginia as a leading maker of wine and craft beverages.
Enterprise: The Business of Agriculture: Farmers Market Phenomenon Is Here to Stay
- (Opinion) In general, the community supported agriculture (CSA) concept has reached a level of maturity. The booming growth years are behind and the core market tends to be a fairly stable cohort of shareholders who are in for the community feeling as much as for the food.
Agri-Pulse: Rural co-ops fight to survive Clean Power Plan's carbon limits
- (Subscriber only) U.S. EPA's Clean Power Plan (CPP), which for the first time would limit power plant carbon emissions, could be a death sentence for more than 100 coal power plants across the country.
Wall Street Journal: Mexico Strains to Lure World’s Oil Giants
- The plunge in global crude prices has thrown workers out of jobs and cut Mexico’s revenues from dozens of fields off these shores. But damage from low prices is vexing the capital Mexico City in less visible ways: It is thwarting its historic, much-anticipated opening of the country’s oil industry to foreign companies.
Washington Times: Keystone XL developer drops landowner lawsuits in Nebraska
- The developer of the Keystone XL pipeline is shifting course in Nebraska and will withdraw lawsuits seeking to gain access to the property of landowners who oppose the project, the company announced Tuesday.
Washington Post: Ex-governor of Idaho sues feds seeking info on nuke proposal
- A former Idaho governor has filed a federal lawsuit seeking to force the U.S. Department of Energy to release information about proposed shipments of spent commercial nuclear fuel to an Idaho facility.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Agri-Pulse: Fresh produce industry convenes as major new food safety regs emerge
- United Fresh, representing the nation's farmers, processors, shippers, marketers, food services and others in the fruit and vegetables sector, convened here this week, shortly after a mountain of long anticipated food safety rules began pouring from the Food and Drug Administration.
Food Safety News: The Government’s Role in Food Safety: Jon Tester
- (Opinion) As an organic farmer from north-central Montana, I’ve always believed it’s important for consumers to know where their food comes from. Too many folks now think that milk comes from a carton, not a cow.
Nasdaq: Amazon Begins Eating U.K. Grocer's Lunch With Butter, Cheese Delivery
- Amazon.com is expanding its same-day delivery service in the U.K. to include items like butter and cheese, a move that comes as the online retailer is widely expected to launch a full grocery service in the country.
Washington Post: Coke ending sponsorship of dietitians group
- Coca-Cola says it will not renew its sponsorship of a professional group for dietitians, bringing to a halt one of many outreach efforts on health by the world’s biggest soda maker.
LA Times: McDonald's move to cage-free eggs is a tipping point for the industry
- Foodies and farmers say McDonald's recent decision to transition to "cage free" eggs for its McMuffins and other menu items was a tipping point in the $9-billion egg industry, which still produces 96 percent of its eggs in barns full of stacked wire cages.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Wall Street Journal: Pacific Trade Talks at Crucial Juncture
- Heated fights over the trade in cars, drugs and dairy products are dividing political factions in several TPP countries, while the current campaign season in Canada and the approaching election year in the U.S. and Japan are making it harder for officials and lawmakers to embrace a deal that hurts sensitive industries.
Wall Street Journal: France Talks Tough On U.S. Trade Accord, Threatens End to Talks
- France is talking tougher about the proposed trade and investment pact between the U.S. and European Union, threatening to call the talks to a close if there isn’t more progress soon.
Reuters: Trading in the Spotlight as Glencore Seeks Way Out of Crisis
- Glencore, one of the world’s largest commodity trading and mining companies, saw its stock tank 30 percent on Monday in the face of heavy debts and shrinking earnings.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
The Guardian: New Zealand's new ocean sanctuary will be one of world's largest protected areas
- New Zealand will create one of the largest marine protected areas in the world, spanning an area of 620,000 sq km, said the prime minister of New Zealand, John Key, to the UN general assembly in New York.
Wall Street Journal: Exporting Oil and Protecting Wildlife: Collin O’Mara
- (Opinion) With a vote in the House to allow the export of U.S. crude oil expected next week, most arguments are about the implications for gas prices, refining jobs and domestic output, or about the geopolitical ramifications of growing Russian and eventually Iranian oil exports. Missing in the debate are the consequences for the nation’s wildlife.
Nasdaq: Steep Hurdles Make Criminal Cases Against Car Makers Difficult
- Despite the scale of Volkswagen's behavior—it has admitted using test-evading software in as many as 11 million cars world-wide—the German auto maker may not face an environmental crime charge, legal experts say. If the Justice Department does pursue a criminal case, it would be the first-ever against an automaker for skirting emissions standards.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
Reuters: U.S. workers sue Monsanto claiming herbicide caused cancer
- A U.S. farm worker and a horticultural assistant have filed lawsuits claiming Monsanto Co.'s Roundup herbicide caused their cancers and Monsanto intentionally misled the public and regulators about the dangers of the herbicide.
Des Moines Register: Deadline looms for new UAW, Deere contract
- A dramatic tail-off from record profits a couple of years ago for Deere & Co., Iowa's iconic equipment manufacturer, could set the stage for prolonged, and potentially contentious, labor negotiations once the current 6-year contract expires Thursday, economists and analysts say.
Phys.org: Scientists sequence genomes of microscopic worms beneficial to agriculture
- Many nematodes (worms) have specialized as pathogens, including those that serve as deadly insect-attacking parasites, making them effective biocontrol agents.
New York Times: Japan Tobacco Shares Sink After Deal for U.S. Cigarette Brand
- Shares in Japan Tobacco plunged on Wednesday after it announced it was paying $5 billion in cash to buy the international rights to Natural American Spirit from Reynolds American.
Washington Post: South Dakota tribe to open nation’s 1st marijuana resort
- The Santee Sioux tribe has already proven its business acumen, running a successful casino, a 120-room hotel and a 240-head buffalo ranch on the plains of South Dakota.
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