Daily Harvest -- 8/16/2013
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: Will farmers 'bring the heat' to finish the farm bill?
- Amidst banners and hand-held fans that read “Bring the Heat,” the American Farm Bureau Federation and Missouri Farm Bureau, along with Republicans Sen. Roy Blunt and Rep. Vicky Hartzler teamed up at the event to make the case for final passage of a new farm bill and other critical legislation.
Agri-Pulse: Rural areas, farmers need more energy efficiency funds, report says
- Rural communities, and especially farmers, could benefit significantly from increased USDA resources and funding for energy efficiency, according to a report released today by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE).
The Hill: Heritage Action head calls for farm bill extension
- The head of the conservative Heritage Action organization on Friday called for a one-year extension of the existing farm bill.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Bloomberg: Corn Jumps on Abandoned Acres, Dry Weather; Soybeans, Wheat Rise
- Corn gained the most in five weeks after the U.S. Department of Agriculture said the number of acres farmers were unable to plant surged, and as dry weather threatens Midwest crops. Soybeans and wheat rose.
Wall Street Journal: Export Sales Boost Corn Futures
- U.S. corn futures climbed on strong export sales and worries about unfavorable weather for crop growth. U.S. corn export sales were better than expected in a weekly government report Thursday morning.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Agri-Pulse: USDA approves Bayer herbicide resistant soybean
- The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) approved a line of herbicide resistant soybeans developed by Bayer CropScience for nonregulated status.
Agri-Pulse: Lower cotton production means higher prices
- (Audio) The new crop production report out this week included the first official forecast for cotton, and it’s down 25 percent from last year. Gary Adams of the National Cotton Council says progress of the crop is running behind schedule. Lower production in China also contributes to higher prices for the crop.
Politico: USDA trip moves U.S. closer to accepting Chinese chicken
- Despite years of food safety scandals surrounding China and another recent bird flu outbreak there, the U.S. Department of Agriculture is moving closer to opening the U.S. market to Chinese-processed chicken by sending two of its senior food safety officials to Beijing next week for a bilateral meeting on the subject.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Des Moines Register: EPA chief promises better relationship with farmers in Iowa and elsewhere
- President Barack Obama’s top environmental official pledged to build trust with farmers in Iowa and elsewhere who have been roundly critical of federal regulation.
The Hill: EPA turns to pesticides to protect bees from colony decline
- Federal officials have developed new labels to warn users that some pesticides may kill honeybees. The measure from the Environmental Protection Agency is intended to combat a sharp decline in bee populations, known as colony collapse disorder.
Science: The Pesticide Paradox
- Although science is guiding some policy changes, there is still room for major improvement when it comes to pesticides, by more carefully tracking their effects, using them more judiciously, reducing their negative impacts, and finding alternatives.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
The Hill: Poll: Majority oppose more foreign workers under immigration reform
- A new poll shows that a large majority of likely voters nationwide do not support an influx of new foreign workers, complicating the prospects of immigration reform in the House.
Mint Press News: Agriculture Secretary: US Farmers Need Immigration Reform From Congress
- Vilsack said the immigration legislation had already garnered support from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce — the largest business lobby in the U.S. — as well as from organized labor groups. “If we don’t do this, you’ll see a drop in farm production and even agriculture migrate out of the U.S.,” he said.
Agri-Pulse: Have farmland values peaked?
- (Subscriber only) Despite lower farm income and expectations of additional declines, farmland values surged further during the second quarter of 2013, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City’s quarterly Survey of Agricultural Credit Conditions, authored by Economist Nathan Kauffman. But fewer bankers surveyed expect the trend to continue.
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