Daily Harvest -- 10/19/2015
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: Washington Week Ahead: House moves on highway bill, waits for Ryan decision
- The House begins moving a long-term highway bill this week even as Republicans try to find a new speaker to replace John Boehner.
Agri-Pulse: Open Mic with Senator Roy Blunt
- (Audio) In this week’s interview, Blunt discusses Congressional challenges including uncertainty in the House Speaker post, obstacles to an agreement on spending, long term funding options for highway infrastructure, and the outlook for Senate action on GMO and country of origin labeling.
Agri-Pulse: Meet the Lawmaker: Rep. Ryan Zinke, Montana
- (Video) As a former Navy SEAL, Ryan Zinke is used to having people by his side, but now he's on his own as Montana's only member of the House of Representatives. In this video, he talks with Agri-Pulse about his background and what it's like to be an At Large representative.
Agri-Pulse: Pompeo considering race for speaker
- Kansas Republican Mike Pompeo, who sponsored legislation to block states from mandating the labeling of biotech foods, is considering a race for House speaker should Ways and Means Chairman Paul Ryan decline.
Des Moines Register: Shuttered schools: Rural America’s SOS
- Rural Iowa — and most of rural America for that matter — is sending an SOS with each closed school, notes the Register as part of a yearlong project on this issue and a new documentary.
Agri-Pulse: OIG announces probe of EPA's RFS management
- The Environmental Protection Agency's internal watchdog is launching an investigation into the agency's analysis of the climate impacts of biofuels.
LA Times: The tax loophole that can save you big bucks off a Tesla Model X
- Tesla Motors may have lucked into a tax loophole for its new $100,000 plus vehicle, in addition to billions of other government incentives the company has received.
Wall Street Journal: California’s Diesel Rule Scam
- (Opinion) The Environmental Protection Agency and California Air Resources Board (CARB) are riding high after exposing Volkswagen’s emission scam. But the self-proclaimed guardians are running their own regulatory racket.
New York Times: Oil and Gas Companies Make Statement in Support of U.N. Climate Goals
- Ten of the world’s big oil companies, mainly from Europe, jointly acknowledged on Friday that their industry must help address global climate change and said that they agreed with the United Nations’ goals of limiting global warming.
FOOD & NUTRITION
NPR: Small Meat Producers Take Their Slaughterhouse Gripes To Congress
- What are we paying for when we pay more for local meat? Lots of things. But small producers say one key issue that's holding them back, and driving up costs, is the strict rules when it comes to how they slaughter their animals.
Washington Post: After firestorm, pork roast is back on the menu at federal prisons
- After a week of controversy surrounding its abrupt removal of pork dishes from the national menu for federal inmates, the government did an about-face Thursday and put pork roast back on the prison bill of fare.
Wall Street Journal: Picking Your Own Apples Can Be Expensive – for Orchards
- U-pick operations generate cash during harvest time, but there are heavy operating costs for farmers.
OZY: How Maine has managed an amazing lobster comeback
- Just three years after lobster prices in Maine collapsed amid a glut of these 10-legged invertebrates, they’ve since surged to their highest in half a decade even as harvests float near record annual highs of around 125 million pounds — twice what it was a decade ago, and six times a typical haul in the 1980s.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Agri-Pulse: Clinton, Vilsack at odds over Trans-Pacific Partnership
- As secretary of state, Hillary Clinton was a strong supporter of trade expansion. She backed the Trans-Pacific Partnership - which was then being negotiated -- while serving in the Obama administration, calling it the “gold standard” for trade deals during a trip to Australia in 2012.
Wall Street Journal: John Kerry Urges Unity on Fighting Climate Change
- Ahead of December climate change talks in Paris, where nearly 200 countries are seeking an accord to reduce carbon-dioxide emissions, Mr. Kerry urged countries to come together to finalize a deal, and said world powers must commit to a “global low-carbon economy.”
The Telegraph: Up to 50,000 missing horses may have ended up as food sold in Britain
- A new report sheds light on a widespread European scandal in 2013 that emerged after food inspectors found horsemeat in frozen beef hamburgers, lasagnas and spaghetti sauces.
Reuters: Olam completes acquisition of ADM's cocoa business
- Olam International, a Singapore-based commodities firm, has completed its acquisition of the global cocoa business of Archer Daniels Midland Co. in a deal valued at $1.2 billion, the companies said on Friday.
New York Times: Ethiopia, a Nation of Farmers, Strains Under Severe Drought
- The strength of this year’s El Niño, a water-warming phenomenon in the Pacific Ocean, has decimated rainfall levels across large stretches of Ethiopia and, in a cruel twist, may also bring flooding to some areas in the coming months.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Agri-Pulse: Flurry of WOTUS legal activity continues
- (Audio) Late last week, a judicial panel opted not to consolidate challenges to the Environmental Protection Agency's Waters of the U.S. rule into one case, dealing a blow to the Obama administration's regulatory effort.
Des Moines Register: Vilsack: 'Vision Iowa'-like conservation effort needed
- Iowa needs a conservation effort similar to its $2 billion Vision Iowa program, the public-private investment that led to development of the Iowa Events Center, Dubuque's America's River Project and other landmark efforts, U.S. Secretary Tom Vilsack said Friday.
Ag Journal: Livestock part of land conservation
- At Corner Post Meats near Black Forest, Colorado, free ranging pigs help breakup ash residue from the destructive fire of June 2013 and root out thistles that invade the piney meadows.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
Reuters: Reinventing New Jersey as 'Garden State' with ethnic crops, tourism
- Craving a taste of his native Liberia 4,500 miles away, maintenance worker Alfred Jones drove just 20 miles from his New Jersey home and waded knee deep into rows of pick-your-own African vegetables at Morris Gbolo's World Crops Farm.
The Daily World: Children of farm workers tackle engineering
- About 2,000 students from the Pajaro Valley Unified School District - a district of 18,000 - participated in the Migrant Academy of Knowledge and Engineering’s new weekend program this year. The Migrant Education program enrolls students whose parents are migrant farm workers.
Wall Street Journal: Syngenta Confronts Shareholder Frustration Following Monsanto Bid Rebuff
- A small group of Syngenta shareholders, led by an investor in Switzerland, plans a public push for the company to undertake a broad strategic review, according to two of the shareholders.
Associated Press: Development Plans for Mormon Cattle Ranch Stirs Controversy
- Under one of the biggest land development plans ever proposed in Florida, a tract more than six times the size of Manhattan could be transformed from a home for cows and alligators into new housing developments for half a million people.
LA Times: Drought takes toll on 'agritourism' farms that once thrived on Halloween crowds
- Around California, drought has taken a toll on small "agritourism" farms that once thrived on the Halloween season crowd. Some have shut down, while others have stopped growing their own pumpkins or trimmed acres from their corn mazes and canceled activities that require water.
Washington Times: Ball State commits nearly $300,000 for regional food hub
- Ball State University plans to spend nearly $300,000 to help establish a regional food hub in Muncie that would supply food from Indiana farms to retail, wholesale and institutional markets, such as restaurants, schools, hospitals or universities.
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