Daily Harvest -- 9/18/2013
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FARM & RURAL POLICY
Agri-Pulse: U.S. Chamber, business groups concerned about farm bill's commodity title
- Business and trade organizations are concerned about the potential for provisions in the farm bill commodity titles to trigger a World Trade Organization (WTO) dispute - even as lawmakers hope to use other aspects of the bill to resolve an ongoing trade challenge involving U.S. cotton subsidies.
The Hill: 2013 Farm Bill: Groundhog Day?
- National Farmers Union President Roger Johnson writes we are on the brink of yet another expiration of the legislation that is critical to all Americans, families and family farmers alike.
Associated Press: FACT CHECK: Food stamp debate has empty calories
- The Associated Press article outlines some of the arguments being made by the GOP's House majority as the chamber prepares to take up the bill.
The Hill: AARP fighting House food stamp bill
- The powerful seniors group, AARP, on Tuesday came out against a House Republican bill that it says would "punish" people on food stamps.
West Central Tribune: Peterson remains pessimistic about Farm Bill's chances
- U.S. Rep. Collin Peterson, D-Minn., told about two dozen farmers Monday in Montevideo that he remains pessimistic about passing a Farm Bill by the end of the month, when the current legislation expires.
FOOD & NUTRITION
Washington Post: First lady wants less advertising of sweet and salty foods to kids, more of healthier options
- Michelle Obama wants food makers and entertainment companies to spend less time advertising sweet and salty foods to kids and more time promoting healthier options.
TRADE & INTERNATIONAL
Agri-Pulse: USAID needs risk assessments for global food security program, GAO says
- The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) has improved its coordination with several U.S. partner agencies on a program to improve global food security, but needs to conduct periodic risk assessments, according to a report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO).
Agri-Pulse: Chinese buyers ink new contracts for soybeans
- Chinese agricultural leaders teamed up with U.S. exporters to ink 13 contracts for 4.83 million metric tons of soybeans worth $2.8 billion during an elaborate signing ceremony hosted on the sidelines of the U.S. Soy Global Trade Exchange here.
The Hill: China's interest grows in joining an Asia-Pacific trade deal
- China's interest in eventually joining an Asia-Pacific trade agreement is growing considerably, U.S. business officials say.
Washington Post: Snuffing out a tobacco exemption in Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal
- The new proposal simply specifies that tobacco is included in an existing exemption for policies necessary to protect human life or health, and requires governments to consult before challenging each other’s tobacco rules.
Wall Street Journal: What Egypt Wants: Cheaper Bread
- Egypt's Islamist government, during its brief reign, couldn't satisfy public demand for subsidized food and fuel—spurring discontent that helped the military drive it from power. The military-backed leadership that took over this summer is now wrestling with the same challenge.
CONSERVATION, ENVIRONMENT & WILDLIFE
Des Moines Register: Oil group blasts EPA for poorly overseeing country’s renewable fuels policy
- The U.S. oil and gas industry said Tuesday the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has bungled its handling of a program responsible for setting the country’s renewable fuels policy.
Washington Post: For Colorado farms, historic floods in drought-hardened land could eventually recharge soil
- Surging waters in Colorado were so powerful they uprooted irrigation pipes and spread them around the fields here, leaving lakes next to which cattle now graze. They also brought instant relief to drought-hardened areas, with the promise of moisture restored in deep soils.
FARM LABOR & IMMIGRATION
Politico: Outside groups try to revive immigration reform
- Nancy Pelosi is huddling with Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg, top labor leaders and former AOL exec Steve Case in separate meetings this week as supporters of immigration reform try to revive the issue, which fast seems to be dying on Capitol Hill.
Agri-Pulse: Record corn crop could help boost ending stocks
- (Audio) USDA is forecasting a record corn crop, which could make a dramatic increase in ending stocks. Additional use for ethanol and additional feed and residual use caused low beginning stocks for 2013.
New York Times: A Magazine for Farm-to-Table
- Modern Farmer, which began publication in April, is trying to benefit from the first signs of growth in the total number of farms since World War II and the farm-to-table food trend that has fueled growth for farmers’ markets and community-supported agriculture.
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