Daily Harvest -- 10/22/2015
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: Stabenow eyes GMO labeling bill by end of year
- (Subscriber only) Federal regulators defended the safety of biotech foods at a congressional hearing today as senators prepared the groundwork for moving a compromise bill to block states from requiring labels on GMO products.
Agri-Pulse: Stabenow sees need for national GMO labeling solution
- (Audio) Senate Agriculture Committee ranking member and Michigan Democrat Debbie Stabenow said Wednesday that she wants to put a biotech labeling bill across the Senate floor before the end of the year.
Agri-Pulse: John Block on Trillions in Debt
- (Audio) This country is $18 trillion in debt and who is doing anything about it? Not 2016 presidential candidates.
The Verge: Apple launches clean energy programs in China to reduce environmental impact of its suppliers
- The two schemes aim to avoid the production of more than 20 million metric tons of pollution between now and 2020 by building solar energy sources in the country's north, east, and southern grid regions, and by partnering with suppliers to install clean energy projects over the coming years.
International Business Times: Are Energy Companies Leading Shareholders Astray On Future Fossil Fuel Demand?
- In the lead-up to the historic United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris in December, it’s not just national governments that have pledged to aim for a sustainable future -- 10 of the largest fossil fuel corporations in the world also have lined up behind the effort, too, but it hasn’t changed demand for carbon-intensive energy.
National Law Review: Policy and Legal Implications of Implementing Renewable Energy at Scale: To DG or Not to DG – That’s The Question
- The rapid growth of distributed generation (DG) over the past two years is expected to continue: as of 2013, the U.S. installed one PV solar system every four minutes – in 2016, this is expected to drop to every minute and twenty seconds.
Supermarket News: Are Energy Upgrades Worth It to Grocers?
- Food retailers inherently know that reducing energy consumption reduces operational expenses and boosts the bottom line. Few, though, have a clear picture of the industry’s energy profile and the magnitude of savings to be realized by strategic energy upgrades.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Agri-Pulse: USDA: Farm to School program responsible for better school meal outcomes
- The Agriculture Department says its Farm to School Grant Program, created under the Obama administration's Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010, has increased the number of school meals sold, bolstered consumption of healthier foods in schools, and helped to reduce plate waste.
The Packer: Consumer groups press buyers on Arctic apple
- Following the lead of Gerber and McDonald’s, Wendy’s restaurants have announced they have no plans to use the genetically modified Arctic apple.
LA Times: Fresh & Easy begins closing down stores
- Fresh & Easy, the grocery chain that has struggled for years in Southern California, said Wednesday that it was closing its business -- but holding out hope for a buyer.
Wall Street Journal: It Will Take More Than Breakfast to Perk Up McDonald’s
- McDonald’s stock has surged on optimism about a possible property spinoff and other initiatives, but it may have nearly run its course.
New York Times: Frequent Antibiotics May Make Children Fatter
- Scientists have known for years that antibiotic use promotes weight gain in livestock, but they don’t know exactly why frequent use of antibiotics is associated with weight gain in children – it may be that the drugs wipe out the healthy bacteria in a child’s body.
New York Times: Can Big Food Get Healthy?
- (Video) Michael Moss, author of “Salt Sugar Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us,” discusses how many of the players involved in selling us on bad food are now helping to promote ostensibly healthier options.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Agri-Pulse: House Ag Committee focuses on policies outside US borders
- Cotton, dairy, and sugar stakeholders went before the House Agriculture Committee Wednesday, arguing that they were being harmed by domestic policies in overseas trading rivals and calling for the U.S. to challenge those policies at the World Trade Organization.
Wall Street Journal: TPP Is Surprising Vote of Confidence in Globalization
- The TPP negotiations suggest that among governing parties at least, support for the expansive American model of free trade—rather than China’s narrower variant—remains intact. It is thus ironic that the one country where passage looks precarious is the U.S.
Yahoo News: Mauritania needs urgent food assistance, says WFP head
- The World Food Programme executive director says a lack of funds is hampering efforts to provide urgent support to Mauritanians and refugees fleeing instability in Mali.
New York Times: Why the Yum Brands Split Makes Sense
- The owner of KFC has decided to split off its troubled China business, leaving two separately traded companies. The logical and potentially rewarding move comes with the chance of a less savory aftertaste.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Agri-Pulse: EPA cost-benefit studies criticized at Senate hearing
- Lawmakers and witnesses at a Senate Environment and Public Works subcommittee hearing today sparred over the way the EPA measures the benefits and costs of its regulations.
ABC News: Study Finds the Warmer It Gets, the More World Economy Hurts
- With each upward degree, global warming will singe the economies of three-quarters of the world's nations and widen the north-south gap between rich and poor countries, according to a new economic and science study.
Seattle Times: Cuba Launches Shark Protection Plan Produced With US Group
- Cuba announced Wednesday that it is launching a long-term plan to preserve its sharks in cooperation with a U.S. environmental group, part of a rapidly accelerating partnership between the two countries aimed at preserving their shared waters in the Gulf of Mexico and Florida Straits.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
Agri-Pulse: Ryan assures worried conservatives on immigration
- Paul Ryan assured House conservatives that if he becomes speaker he won't allow an immigration reform bill to move unless a majority of Republicans support it.
Breitbart: San Francisco Board unanimously reaffirms sanctuary city status
- Tuesday the San Francisco Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a resolution urging local law enforcement not to comply with federal immigration authorities’ requests, the Associated Press reports.
Farming Life: Survey reveals farm workers suffer more serious injuries
- Farm workers suffer from more serious injuries, that keep them off work for over one month, than any other industry, a new study has revealed.
Agri-Pulse: Lanon Baccam to oversee USDA Risk Management, Farm Service agencies
- Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that Lanon Baccam has been named USDA's Deputy Under Secretary for Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services, overseeing the Risk Management and Farm Service agencies, following the departure of Karis Gutter.
Market Watch: Tractor Supply’s Profit Rises on Higher Sales
- Tractor Supply, which started as a mail-order business of tractor parts, has more than 1,400 stores that supply tractor parts and home-and-garden gear, farm equipment, cowboy boots and food for livestock and pets. In the latest quarter, it opened 30 stores and closed three.
Twin Cities-Pioneer Press: Hormel Names New Operations Chief, President
- Hormel Foods Corp. said Wednesday that it has elevated Vice President James Snee to the role of president and operations chief, effective Oct. 26.
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