Daily Harvest -- 8/15/2013
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Wall Street Journal: California's Hen Pecking
- Animal-rights activists have been lobbying Congress for years to adopt costly new food and environmental regulations in the name of more humane conditions for farm animals. Congress has repeatedly declined, and so groups like the Humane Society of the United States took their campaign to California.
Kansas City Star: Hoeven: Farm leaders should woo big-city lawmakers
- A North Dakota Republican senator who has been asked to help negotiate a compromise with the House on a new farm bill told state agriculture leaders Wednesday he could use their help in lobbying big-city lawmakers.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Agri-Pulse: Food makes up 16 percent of the cost to raise a child, USDA reports
- A middle-income family with a child born in 2012 can expect to spend more than $240,000 over the next 17 years, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) annual report released today on the costs of raising a child.
The Hill: Pro-organic group wants FDA to ban 'natural' label on GMOs
- The Organic Consumers Association has launched a petition asking the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to ban “natural” labels on foods containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
Kansas City Star: Cooler weather slowing Arkansas rice development
- A year ago, Arkansas rice farmers were bringing in a record harvest after planting early and then weathering a costly drought. This year, growers got a late start and temperatures have been so cool that rice plants are taking longer to mature.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Agri-Pulse: The government should produce better trade promotion data, GAO finds
- The Government Accountability Office (GAO) released a report concluding that the government needs to produce better information about its resources dedicated to trade promotion and exports.
Agri-Pulse: Deere sees strong increase in third quarter earnings
- Agriculture equipment giant John Deere reported today a 26 percent increase in third quarter earnings compared with the same period last year, as a result of “considerable strength in the farm sector, especially in North and South America.”
Agri-Pulse: U.S. Soybean export picture
- (Audio) The export forecast for soybeans this year was reduced by 65 million bushels this week, but American Soybean Association President Danny Murphy says they are still pleased, as soybeans remain the leading agricultural export.
Fox News: Paraguay’s new president, target of undercover US probe, is a millionaire tobacco magnate
- The man taking over as Paraguay's new president Thursday has built a family fortune in one of the most unequal places in South America, dominating industries from banking to tobacco to soft drinks to soccer.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
Agri-Pulse: USDA to fund housing for farm laborers
- Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today the availability of nearly $40 million to provide housing for farmworkers and their families. USDA says the funds are part of a larger effort to support the rural economy.
Bloomberg: California’s $43 Billion Farms See Labor in Immigrant Fix
- While get-tough states such as Arizona made it a crime for undocumented immigrants to seek work, California’s $43.5 billion-a-year farm industry depends on a shadow workforce of undocumented Mexican immigrants that’s eroding under economic improvements back home and tighter U.S. border controls.
Washington Post: Third-ranking House Republican target of immigration activists in California
- Caravans of cars and buses carrying union members and others came from all over California to House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy’s Central Valley district, where they held a rally pressing him to support a pathway to citizenship for the millions of immigrants in the country illegally.
Politico: The way forward on immigration
- Condoleezza Rice and Henry Cisneros and Ed Rendell and Haley Barbour write that as co-chairs of the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Immigration Task Force, they mapped common ground within the immigration debate and believe there is ample room for achieving consensus. They are releasing initial recommendations to fix several key areas of the U.S. immigration system.
Kansas City Star: Turkey removal from SI facility stirs some anger
- The removal of some turkeys from the grounds of a Staten Island mental health facility has some people crying foul. The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Wildlife Services division took a number of the birds away from the grounds of the South Beach Psychiatric Center earlier this week, and they were taken to a food processing facility and euthanized.
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