Daily Harvest -- 8/9/2013
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: Senators introduce bill to address family farmer bankruptcy ruling
- Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, and Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., introduced legislation recently that seeks to reverse a Supreme Court ruling that they claim is making it harder for bankrupt family farmers to reorganize their finances.
Agri-Pulse: FSA seeks comments on Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program
- The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) is asking for input on the updates it made for producers applying for coverage under the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP).
Politico: House GOP: Welfare reform 2.0 for food stamps
- “Boehner vs. Barack” will surely remain the political headline going into the showdown this fall over government funding and the debt. But it’s also Republicans vs. an economy that brings out contradictions in the GOP’s policies — as well as among its younger leaders.
Roll Call: McCaskill Sends Campaign Pitch for Farm Bill
- Sen. Claire McCaskill is reaching out to her campaign mailing list to push for food stamp funding. McCaskill is by no means the only Senate Democrat talking about the farm bill during the August recess. Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., held a news conference about the farm bill on Monday.
Wall Street Journal: Washington's Latest Special Favor
- “For a glimpse at the secret, special-favors factory that Washington has become under President Obama, check out this week's big news out of the Environmental Protection Agency,” writes Kimberley Strassel. In EPA’s recently issued annual quota for renewable fuels, the agency exempted one of the nation's 143 refineries from the quota.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Agri-Pulse: Monthly FAO Food Price Index falls
- The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations’ (FAO) Food Price Index fell for the third consecutive month in July, the group announced today. Last month’s index is 2 percent below June 2013 levels and 3.3 percent below July 2012 levels.
Agri-Pulse: FDA again extends food safety comment period
- FDA has again extended the comment period for two provisions of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) that were proposed in January. Now, producers will have until mid-November to comment on the rules.
The Hill: MoveOn to launch GMO labeling push
- MoveOn is planning events in at least 35 cities on Friday to urge lawmakers to require the disclaimers on food containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
Wall Street Journal: The Drugs in Our Beef: Bigger Cows, More Worries
- Cattle prices rose sharply on Thursday after America’s largest meat producer, Tyson Foods, said it would stop using cattle feed containing Zilmax, an additive that speeds weight gain in animals. Dropping the additive will reduce the amount of beef produced by each animal, tightening overall supplies.
Bloomberg: Foodies Fight to Save Detroit With Job Hopes Pinned on Arugula
- With automobile jobs gone for good and thousands of abandoned lots blighting the landscape, some in Detroit are promoting urban farming -- small-scale and largely geared toward booming local-and organic-foods markets -- as a way toward growing a healthier economy.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Bloomberg: Starboard Said to Seek Group to Form Rival Smithfield Bid
- Starboard Value LP, an investor in Smithfield Foods Inc. (SFD), approached buyout firms and meat processors to encourage them to form a bidding group to derail a Chinese takeover, said two people familiar with the process.
Washington Post: French farmers protest low prices with egg-smashing rampage across Brittany
- French farmers are threatening to amplify a protest over low egg prices by smashing thousands of eggs on the streets and squares of France’s main poultry producing region of Brittany.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
Wall Street Journal: Businesses Push for More Low-Skill Visas
- As Congress considers an immigration overhaul, an eclectic group of businesses is stepping up in support, eager to take advantage of new categories of low-skilled immigrant laborers the legislation would allow.
Agri-Pulse: American Bar Association to vote on animal activist law
- The American Bar Association (ABA) will vote next week on whether to support the repeal of the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act (AETA), a law passed in 2006 intended to curtail violent or threatening acts by animal rights organizations.
Agri-Pulse: Judge orders plaintiffs to post bond in horse slaughter case
- A federal magistrate judge in New Mexico required animal rights groups to post a $495,000 bond after they won a restraining order last Friday against horse slaughter facilities.
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