Daily Harvest News Service
Daily Harvest -- 11/5/2015
Here's your daily summary of top news from and other national and regional headlines from across the country. Do you know of someone who should also be on our list? Please ask them to click here.


Agri-Pulse: Lawmakers propose new cuts in crop insurance
Link - Critics of federal crop insurance are proposing to cut about $24 billion from the program, far more than what was included in a congressional budget agreement.

Agri-Pulse: Brady picked to chair Ways and Means
Link - Texas Rep. Kevin Brady, who represents a suburban Houston district, was selected by the House GOP Steering Committee to take over as chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee.

New York Times: Enlisting Veterans to Remedy the Shortage of Farmers
Link - In response to the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, Michael O’Gorman, a longtime California farmer, formed the Farmer Veteran Coalition, the largest of a small number of American charities that is helping returning military personnel, some of which are originally from rural areas, transition into jobs as farmers.


New York Times: China Burns Much More Coal Than Reported, Complicating Climate Talks
Link - China, the world’s leading emitter of greenhouse gases from coal, has been burning up to 17 percent more coal a year than the government previously disclosed, according to newly released data. The finding could complicate the already difficult efforts to limit global warming.

Washington Times: Battle resumes at New Jersey hearing over ocean gas terminal
Link - Opponents of a proposed terminal for liquefied natural gas imports off the New Jersey and New York coasts readied a final push against the project, while the company hoped to bat back what it considers fear-based and unfounded claims.

ABC News: Oklahoma Town Knows How to Survive Oil Busts: a Backup Plan
Link - Despite the bust, Ponca City's — and Oklahoma's — love affair with oil will not end anytime soon. "For those of us in this region, oil is good," Ponca City Mayor Homer Nicholson said. "We like oil and gas and energy because it has made a lot of people rich."


Agri-Pulse: John Block on Meat – a Carcinogen
Link - (Audio) Pick up the paper, turn on the TV and someone pretending to know what they are talking about will be telling us what to eat and what not to eat.

Christian Science Monitor: Food industry is craving to consumer demands for natural ingredients
Link - While a 2015 Nielsen survey indicates that an increasing number of Americans want fresh, natural, and minimally processed foods, Azodicarbonamide, also known as the yoga mat chemical, has been identified in almost 500 food products.

TIME: The Unexpected Way Fixing Food Deserts Changes Diets
Link - Food deserts—areas with a lack of access to healthy and affordable food—are thought by some to be risk factors for obesity. When people don’t have easy access to healthy food, the thinking goes, they can’t eat it and their diet remains poor. However, other researchers question whether a market is really what changes the diets of a neighborhood’s residents.

Reuters: Sugar, corn syrup face off over 'natural' claims in U.S. lawsuit
Link - Big sugar processors are set to take on major corn refiners including Archer Daniels Midland Co and Cargill Inc. before a U.S. jury on Wednesday in a billion-dollar lawsuit that could shape how consumers view two bitter foes in the sweetener market.


Agri-Pulse: Vilsack: TPP text to be released 'very, very soon'
Link - USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack says the text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement will be released "very, very soon" and that the document will prove to be very beneficial to agriculture.

Agri-Pulse: Livestock trucking amendment falls short of approval
Link - An amendment to the House highway bill that would have allowed for heavier loads of livestock on the nation's highways failed to receive congressional approval Wednesday after another truck weight limit amendment met a similar fate Tuesday night.

NPR: In The 'Cradle Of Cacao,' Chocolate Brigades Fight For A Bigger Harvest
Link - Cacao is actually an edible fruit that's fermented after harvest. Meanwhile, the fruit's seeds (not edible, at least initially) are roasted, and the ingredients are combined and eventually cooked from powder into a cocoa-like substance.

New York Times: Ruling in Mexico Sets Into Motion Legal Marijuana
Link - The Mexican Supreme Court opened the door to legalizing marijuana on Wednesday, delivering a pointed challenge to the nation’s strict substance abuse laws and adding its weight to the growing debate in Latin America over the costs and consequences of the war against drugs.

Wall Street Journal: McDonald’s Beefs Up Its Range with a Meatier Mac
Link - McDonald’s Corp. is pushing upscale in the U.K., launching new, pricier burgers with the thickest patties it has ever sold here, as the fast-food giant aims to thwart growing competition from trendier rivals like Byron Hamburgers Ltd. and Shake Shack Inc.


Agri-Pulse: Democrats press EPA as GOP forces passage of anti-WOTUS measure
Link - (Subscriber only) Republicans knew they didn't have the votes to repeal the Obama administration's Clean Water Act rule. But they managed to put Senate Democrats on the hot seat over the issue.

Agri-Pulse: WOTUS vote tells ag where Senators stand
Link - (Audio) Most agriculture organizations are pleased with the Senate action this week to pass a resolution disapproving of EPA’s WOTUS rule.

Agri-Pulse: New pilot project aims to address water quality concerns
Link - A new initiative aims to bring farmers, input providers, government leaders and advocacy groups together to address water quality concerns while still increasing on-farm productivity in Minnesota, known as the land of 10,000 lakes.

Wall Street Journal: See Indian Pollution From Space
Link - A satellite image of fires burning across farmland in the northern state of Punjab prompts a closer look at a practice that has been criticized as contributing to dangerously high air pollution levels across large swathes of northern India.


Wall Street Journal: Kraft to Slash 2,600 More Jobs, Close Seven Plants
Link - Kraft Heinz Co. plans to close seven manufacturing plants in North America, resulting in the loss of 2,600 jobs, as the newly merged food maker seeks to pare costs and eliminate excess production capacity.

SF Gate: Farmworking communities in the Central Valley battle ongoing California drought
Link - As California’s water crisis looms over the agricultural industry, conversations have focused on the threat to big growers while often overlooking the devastating potential impact to the laborers and small migrant communities.


Forbes: Lost Hills Found: A Poor, Farm Community Is Getting Assistance From Agriculture's Power Couple
Link - Unlike the other small communities that dot California’s Central Valley, Lost Hills is just miles away from thousands of pistachio and almond acres owned by billionaire couple Stewart and Lynda Resnick, which has been a boon for the town lately.

LA Times: Will 'Big Marijuana' obliterate the small family farms of Mendocino County?
Link - A few years ago, Mendocino County allowed growers to have 99 plants per lot, but the federal government threatened to sue the county, and the program was scaled back. However, with the prospect of legalized recreational marijuana on the horizon, Mendocino supervisors are reconsidering the 25-plant limit.

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