Daily Harvest -- 12/5/2014
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: Shipping issues unresolved in food-aid debate
- The shipping industry is losing a bid to increase the amount of U.S. food aid that must be transported by American carriers, a move that would likely boost the cost of moving the commodities.
Agri-Pulse: USDA extends dairy Margin Protection Program deadline to Dec. 19
- U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that the application deadline for the dairy Margin Protection Program (MPP) will be extended until Dec. 19, 2014.
The Bismarck Tribune: Crystal Sugar CEO says shareholders to lose money
- The head of American Crystal Sugar Co. said Thursday that most shareholders in the sugar beet cooperative will lose money this year, due primarily to excess supply of Mexican sugar in the market and poor yields.
Reuters: Special Report: Powerful antibiotic for cows often misused by farmers
- It is one of the most potent antibiotics used by U.S. cattle and dairy farmers, the key component in the top-selling drug line of Zoetis, the world’s largest animal health company.
New York Times: On Smaller Farms, Including Organic Farms, Technology and Tradition Meet
- I spent yesterday morning at a remarkable meeting of young farmers meshing tradition and technology to sustain healthy soils and produce bountiful crops in a changing economy and climate. They had gathered for a “pre conference” ahead of the seventh Young Farmers Conference hosted by the Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture in the lower Hudson Valley the rest of this week
Bloomberg: Ethanol Recovering From Four-Year Low Thanks to Exports
- Exports of the additive derived from corn rose 31 percent this year to the highest level since 2011, meeting demand from South Korea to Persian Gulf oil producers. The growth in sales follows a tripling of gasoline and diesel exports since 2009.
Washington Post: Bird’s fate shaping energy development in US West
- Efforts to conserve a struggling species of grouse that ranges across the Western U.S. are having far-reaching effects on the region’s energy industry as the Obama administration decides whether the bird needs more protections.
Denver Post: House approves tax credit for wind energy but trouble is ahead
- A federal tax break for wind power — a boon for the industry in blustery states such as Colorado — likely will stay on the books for another year despite opposition from conservative groups such as Americans for Prosperity and Heritage Action.
WGN: City council to consider mandating oil blend with 15% ethanol
- The Chicago city council will consider an ordinance mandating the blend of 15 percent ethanol and 85 percent oil, or E-15, this week.
Nature: Natural gas: The fracking fallacy
- The United States is banking on decades of abundant natural gas to power its economic resurgence. That may be wishful thinking.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Reuters: World food prices stable for third month in November: FAO
- World food prices were stable for the third consecutive month in November, as higher cereals and vegetable oils prices were counteracted by marked falls in sugar and dairy products, the U.N.'s food agency said on Thursday.
Capital Press: Pro-GMO side ‘wins’ online debate
- Supporter of genetically modified crops were declared the victors over opponents in a radio program's Dec. 3 debate.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Agri-Pulse: Democrats ask Froman to explain labor issues in TPP
- Four House Democrats are asking U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman to provide details on labor provisions in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) before the ambitious trade deal is finalized.
Associated Press: EU Makes Move to Let Member States Block GM Crops
- The European Union is taking a big step toward giving EU member states the power to ban the cultivation of genetically modified crops even if they have been approved by the food safety authority of the 28-nation bloc.
Washington Post: Free trade with U.S.? Europe balks at chlorine chicken, hormone beef.
- In Europe, this is a season of angst — even paranoia — over a historic bid to link the United States and the 28-nation European Union in the world’s largest free-trade deal.
Wall Street Journal: Canadian Authorities Race to Contain Bird Flu Outbreak
- Canadian authorities said Wednesday they have quarantined two more poultry farms in British Columbia as they race to contain a bout of avian influenza that has already hit two farms in the province and caused a number of Asian countries to impose restrictions on farm imports from Canada.
Wall Street Journal: A New Mandate For Abe — But for What?
- Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe seems poised to claim another landslide electoral victory on Dec. 14, if the latest consensus of media polls proves correct.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Los Angeles Times: Tricolored blackbird gains endangered species protection in California
- The California Fish and Game Commission on Wednesday granted endangered species protections to the tricolored blackbird, approving the designation on a temporary, emergency basis.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
Agri-Pulse: House Republicans pass measure to block Obama immigration plan
- The Republican-controlled House on Thursday approved legislation aimed at undoing President Obama's executive action on immigration, despite little hope that it would pass in the lame-duck Senate, and in the face of a veto threat from the White House.
Minneapolis Star Tribune: Rep. Collin Peterson among few Dems supporting measure condeming president's executive action
- Rep. Collin Peterson was among only three Democrats Thursday who supported a symbolic vote banning the executive branch from deferring deportation of undocumented immigrants -- a direct aim at President Barack Obama's November executive order on immigration.
Agri-Pulse: Animal welfare group targets Perdue Farms with video
- An animal welfare group's video depicting unhealthy conditions at a poultry farm operated by a contract grower for Perdue Farms claims to provide “an unprecedented look at a so-called humane American chicken factory farm.”
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