Daily Harvest -- 12/30/2014
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
- Paul E. Schickler: Consortiums of industry and grower groups are developing data standards and principles to ensure farmers are informed about the risks and benefits of sharing data as they sign up for new value-added services.
Fortune: Driverless tractors on the farm
- Companies such as Kinze Manufacturing, a large farm-equipment maker in Iowa, are developing variations of driverless tractors that would turn a century-old chore over to robots and free farmers to do other work without having to hire someone to take their place.
The Hill: Sen. Inhofe: Environmental regs won’t be top priority
- The incoming Republican chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee said fighting environmental regulations will not be his top priority in the next Senate.
Agri-Pulse: Highs and lows for ethanol 2014
- (Audio) 2014 was a record year in many ways for US ethanol producers in many ways, according to Renewable Fuels Association President Bob Dinneen.
Des Moines Register: Iowa produces record amount of ethanol in 2014
- Iowa made a record 3.9 billion gallons of ethanol in 2014, but output of the fuel faces uncertainty next year as the U.S. government debates the future of a controversial rule mandating the blending of ethanol in gasoline, a trade group said Monday.
Wall Street Journal: Oil Prices Close at Five-Year Lows on Glut Expectations
- Oil prices hit fresh five-year lows on Monday on signs a global glut will keep growing.
Wall Street Journal: For Energy Policy Makers, Tough Lessons in Downside of Cheap Gas
- The sharp drop in fuel prices is undermining government policies that bet expensive gasoline would prod Americans to find alternatives to gas-guzzling automobiles.
Bloomberg: Texans Discover Oil Grows on Olive Trees as Crude Drops
- As crude prices tumble, landowners across Texas are accelerating production of a different kind of oil -- olive oil.
FOOD & NUTRITION
New York Times: A Kansas Town Rallies for a Modest Lifeline: A Local Grocery Store
- Many people in Plains are fighting — against the odds, but with some notable success — to bring fresh groceries back to their one-square-mile city limits.
Wall Street Journal: Supermarkets, Convenience Stores Now Woo Diners, Too
- Consumers weighing whether to dine out at a tablecloth restaurant or a fast-food joint now have additional options to consider: the grocery store and the minimart.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Agri-Pulse: NFU urges USDA to scrap plan for Argentine beef imports on Foot and Mouth concerns
- The National Farmers Union (NFU) is urging USDA to scrap a proposed rule that would allow importation of beef from northern Argentina and Uruguay because of concerns about Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD), a highly contagious animal disease.
The Telegraph: High on the Hog: Big Pacific trade deal could hinge on pork tariffs
- Japan imposes a relatively modest 4.3 percent tariff on imported pork but has a separate system, known as the "gate price," that more fundamentally controls what U.S. pork farmers can send there.
Wall Street Journal: China’s Low-Tech Smuggling Fad: Vietnamese Rice
- Smuggling in the world’s second largest economy might conjure images of small-package, high-value commodities coveted by Chinese urbanites, such as iPhones, cocaine or even lobsters. But another contraband of a more common variety has been flowing in vast quantities across China’s 800-mile border with Vietnam: rice.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Los Angeles Times: State's drought having pronounced effect on wildlife
- Starving baby squirrels in parts of Northern California are so hungry that they are jumping out of their nests to search for food and getting lost on the way home.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
Agri-Pulse: Jeb Bush emails show concerns about immigration policy
- As governor of Florida, Jeb Bush was sometimes forced to defend comments or positions that critics felt were too soft on illegal immigration, according to his newly released email correspondence.
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