Daily Harvest -- 11/13/2013
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: Specialty crop block grants to fund projects
- (Audio) USDA recently announced the latest specialty crop block crops, which benefit nearly 700 initiatives nationwide. The grants will be used for a variety of projects, ranging from market promotion to research.
Billings Gazette: Agriculture poised for a decline, economist says
- Economist Bob Young said market growth for U.S. agriculture has been unprecedented, with farm income value rising from $275 billion in 2003 to $425 billion the last three years. Conditions are now right for that growth to decline, with corn demand waning and China’s appetite for U.S. export crops like soybeans tapering off.
The Hill: Shippers vs. Obama: Farm bill negotiators face choice
- The six-month congressional battle over how the U.S. provides international food aid is coming to a head. Lawmakers negotiating in the House-Senate farm bill conference could make decisions as soon as this week on the issue, which has split Democrats and Republicans and pitted the White House against its union allies.
The Hill: House chairman: EPA trying to control all U.S. waters
- A draft regulation currently under an interagency review at the White House would allow the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to control virtually all man-made and natural bodies of water in the country, according to Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas).
FOOD & NUTRITION
Reuters: Past and future collide as Mexico fights over GMO corn
- After pioneering the cultivation of corn thousands of years ago, Mexico must overcome the weight of history to give the go-ahead to allow genetically modified strains into its fields.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Agri-Pulse: FAO calls for $24 million to aid Philippine rice farmers, fisherman
- In the wake of severe damage to the fisheries and agriculture sectors in the Philippines in the wake of Typhoon Haiyan, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations is mobilizing support and calling for $24 million in aid.
Agri-Pulse: Wanted: An Aggie to serve on CFTC
- With the majority of the five Commodity Futures Trading Commissioners likely to be leaving by the end of this year, nineteen agricultural organizations asked President Barack Obama to make sure at least one of his nominees has a background in agricultural commodity futures markets.
Financial Times: CME defies trends by hiking trading fees
- CME Group has substantially raised transaction fees for the first time in four years as it flexes its pricing muscle as the dominant US futures exchange operator. The fee rises would hit traders in markets from Treasury to energy futures.
LA Times: U.S., EU resume negotiations on free trade agreement
- European and U.S. officials resumed negotiations Monday on a trans-Atlantic free trade agreement despite angry protests in Europe over American electronic spying and threats to call off the talks.
Financial Times: House Republicans oppose fast-track authority on trade deals
- A group of 22 Republicans in the House of Representatives said they would oppose President Barack Obama’s bid to secure “fast-track” authority to pass trade deals, in the latest sign that political obstacles threaten the president’s second-term trade agenda.
Reuters: Corzine, banks fail to win dismissal of MF Global lawsuit
- A federal judge on Tuesday rejected a bid by former MF Global Holdings Ltd chief executive Jon Corzine to dismiss investor litigation seeking to hold him, other executives and many banks responsible for the futures brokerage's rapid collapse.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Agri-Pulse: Opinion: Our commitment to conservation should be permanent
- Rand Wentworth, president of the Land Trust Alliance, says the future growth and continued success of these land trusts and their ability to continue to attract new donations from landowners is under threat because the tax benefit that has made much of this success possible expires at the end of the year.
Agri-Pulse: NRCS chiefs express support for conservation compliance
- Seven former chiefs of USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) sent a letter to the House and Senate Agriculture Committee leaders Monday expressing their support for conservation compliance in the farm bill.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
Wall Street Journal: Advocates for Immigration Bill Are Taking a New Tack
- Some farm groups are looking for a niche fix addressing their concerns if a wider deal isn't reached. And President Barack Obama has begun speaking regularly on immigration after months of remaining quiet at the request of supporters in Congress who argued that Republicans are less likely to pass a bill that the president is pushing.
Financial Times: Starbucks ordered to pay Kraft $2.7bn
- Starbucks has been ordered to pay $2.7bn in compensation to Kraft Foods – a charge equal to the coffee chain’s entire net income since the start of 2012 – for terminating a deal to let the food group distribut Dean Foods Sees Tough Slog in Milk Businesse its coffee.
Wall Street Journal: Dean Foods Sees Tough Slog in Milk Business
- The biggest U.S. processor and distributor of fluid milk warned Tuesday of slack sales volumes through the first half of next year as it grapples with the loss of some major retail customers and the high cost of raw milk.
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