Daily Harvest News Service
Daily Harvest -- 12/4/2014
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: House votes to reinstate tax-break package for 2014
Link - The House voted overwhelmingly Wednesday to reinstate for this year a series of expired tax breaks that are important to farmers, landowners, biofuel producers and the wind industry.

Agri-Pulse: Iowa governor pleased with NJ pig crate veto
Link - (Audio) Iowa Governor Terry Branstad has nothing but praise for New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who vetoed legislation in his state that would have banned gestation crates for pigs. Branstad said farms started using gestation crates in the 1970s to protect baby pigs from being crushed to death by large sows.

Agri-Pulse: House approves barge fuel-tax increase
Link - Congress could soon pass a tax increase to help fund reconstruction of aging locks on the Mississippi River and other waterways, a top priority for agricultural shippers.

Agri-Pulse: Farm debt, expenses and income
Link - (Audio) For the first time in five years the increase in farm sector debt this year was higher than farm sector assets. Higher farm expenses are the main reason net farm income forecasts are lower this year.

Agri-Pulse: Vilsack tells of $9.7 million in grants to diversify American agriculture
Link - USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack says $9.7 million in grants will benefit 62 community-based and non-profit organizations, and educational institutions to conduct training, outreach and technical assistance for socially disadvantaged (including tribal) and veteran farmers and ranchers.

Des Moines Register: Former opponent: Science supports GMOs
Link - Mark Lynas was once among anti-GMO activists tearing out canola, sugar beets, maize and other crops. Now he's speaking in favor of genetically modified crops.

Wall Street Journal: Alico Buying 3 Florida Citrus Producers
Link - Alico Inc. said it is acquiring three Florida citrus producers, making the U.S. agribusiness one of the country’s largest suppliers of oranges.

Kansas City Star: Young farmers getting squeezed by falling crop prices
Link - Aspiring farmers can’t expect to earn a living simply working on their family’s operation. Farmers in the next generation typically have to buy their parents out of their plot or be among the lucky few who find reasonably priced fields.


Reuters: U.S. appoints top diplomat for energy issues
Link - The U.S. State Department on Wednesday appointed Amos Hochstein as the top diplomat for energy affairs as the Obama administration tests using the power of the domestic energy boom to shape policy with foreign energy producers and consumers.

Wall Street Journal: Germany Moves to Speed Renewable Energy Goal
Link - Germany sought to steer its ambitious shift to renewable energy back on track after its plans to phase out nuclear power triggered an increase in carbon-gas emissions over the past two years.

Wall Street Journal: Tyson CEO: Oil Price Drop Good for Your Groceries
Link - At WSJ’s CEO Council, Tyson Foods CEO Donnie Smith talks with the WSJ’s Sara Murray about low oil prices and the economic outlook for 2015.


Wall Street Journal: Fine Wine and Caviar—Made in China?
Link - China has never shied away from duplicating mass-produced Western goods. Now it’s trying its hand at boutique wine, artisanal cheeses and homegrown caviar. Will it succeed?

Atlanta Business Chronicle: Ads for Coke's new milk product pulled following backlash, called 'sexist'
Link - Ads to promote Coca-Cola Co.'s new "premium" milk product won't be used as tests of the ads faced backlash and were called 'sexist."

Bloomberg: Steak Lovers Squeezed With Record Beef Premium: Chart of the Day
Link - Meat shoppers will have more reasons than ever to steer clear of steaks as the cost of U.S. beef rises to a record compared with pork.


Reuters: Canada wheat exports dogged by quality complaints
Link - Buyers of Canadian wheat are increasingly complaining about quality ever since Ottawa changed how its biggest crop is sold and inspected, raising the risk the world's third largest exporter will lose sales to rivals like the United States.

Reuters: Food crises still a risk as grain stocks near a 15-year high
Link - Global grain stocks are heading for a 15-year high as the largest ever U.S. corn harvest enters its final stages, but the risk of food shortages persists as demand for meat and biofuel keeps rising.

New York Times: Amid Bugs, Hail, Floods and Bacteria, Italian Olives Take a Beating
Link - Aside from the fly — the Bactrocera oleae, to be precise — severe hailstorms and flooding, and a devastating bacteria in parts of Puglia, Italy’s largest olive oil producing region, cut olive production by about 35 percent.


Agri-Pulse: House vote set on GOP’s California drought relief bill
Link - (Subscriber only) The House of Representatives next week will vote on a Republican bill designed to bring short-term relief to Californians suffering under the worst drought in a century.

Agri-Pulse: Toledo mayor says toxic algal blooms are doomed to repeat
Link - (Subscriber only) The mayor of Toledo, Ohio, said toxic algal blooms in Lake Erie that caused a water crisis in his city this summer will occur again if the federal government does not pay more attention to regional water quality.

Reuters: KKR invests $100 million in arid climate agriculture firm
Link - Private equity firm KKR & Co has invested about $100 million in UK-based agribusiness Sundrop Farms Holding Ltd, which plans to use solar panels and sea water to grow vegetables in a vast greenhouse in Australia's driest state.


Agri-Pulse: Vilsack says immigration reform critical for future of food supply
Link - Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack says President Barack Obama's executive action on immigration will provide some help to the agriculture industry, but he says Congressional action is needed to make sure U.S. farmers have the legal workforce they need.

Politico: 17 states sue to block Obama immigration order
Link - Seventeen states filed a joint lawsuit in federal court Wednesday to try blocking President Barack Obama’s executive order on immigration.


Agri-Pulse: Opinion: Don't politicize producer's Checkoff
Link - Bob McCan: The cattle industry has individuals and organizations that differ on their views of government involvement. By and large, the members of the NCBA, the members who I have represented this year, want less government involvement.

New York Times: Ann Marie Gardner Steps Down as Editor of Modern Farmer
Link - Modern Farmer, a magazine that glamorizes farming and has become one of the magazine industry’s biggest recent success stories, has lost its founding editor.

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