WASHINGTON, May 27, 2016 - Donald Trump will be in Fresno, Calif., today where he’ll meet privately with a group of farmers before holding a rally. Few details about the meeting with growers have been released. But a source familiar with it tells Agri-Pulse that the discussion is supposed to range from the water problems in the Central Valley but also trade policy and immigration reform, issues that are of concern to farmers far beyond California. 

Yesterday Trump was in North Dakota, where he used an energy conference to promise to pull out of the Paris climate agreement and kill the Obama administration’s “waters of the U.S.” rule and regulations on greenhouse gas emissions. Trump didn’t mention ethanol or the Renewable Fuel Standard. During an earlier news conference, Trump was critical of wind power, which he said “doesn’t work without subsidies.”

The Trump campaign posted a photo on Facebook of the candidate celebrating the fact that he had locked up the 1,237 delegates. There was no champagne. His feast consisted of a McDonald’s burger and fries and a bottle of Diet Coke. 

House GOP could restrict appropriations process. House Republican leaders are considering whether to impose restrictions on amendments for appropriations bills after yesterday’s defeat of the Energy-Water spending bill. Some 130 Republicans voted against the bill after a gay-rights amendment was added to the legislation. 

House Speaker Paul Ryan told reporters that Republicans will talk about the best way to proceed on the spending bills when lawmakers return from the week-long Memorial Day recess. Ryan is on the spot because he promised conservatives an open amendment process when he took over the speakership.

House Appropriations Chairman Harold Rogers said he expected some restrictions on amendments to be considered but that the House would continue debating the individual spending bills. “We’ll adapt to the circumstances and move on. The Agriculture bill, which funds USDA and Food and Drug Administration, is expected on the floor next month. 

USDA finds superbug gene in pig. Investigators with USDA are trying to track the origin of a pig that was carrying a bacteria gene that makes the microbes resistant to the antibiotic-of-last-resort in human medicine. The fear is that infections with bacteria with this kind of gene can’t be treated by any antibiotic. 

Yesterday, it was announced that E. coli bacteria with the gene, known as MCR-1, had been identified in a woman in Pennsylvania, and federal officials also disclosed that the gene had also been found in a sample of pig intestines. The sample was one of 949 that have been tested by USDA’s Agricultural Research Service. The E. coli bacteria are resistant to several antibiotics, including colistin, which is used to treat patients with infections that can’t be cured by any other drugs.

Colistin isn’t used in animals in the United States. Officials say that findings from the USDA research will help determine whether further steps are needed to understand the gene. 

CDC Director Tom Frieden told The Washington Post that the finding of the gene in the Pennsylvania patient “shows us that the end of the road isn’t very far away for antibiotics.” 

Key lawmakers seek to slow down organic rule. Leaders of the Senate and House Agriculture committees are appealing to USDA to allow another 90 days of public comment on proposed new animal welfare standards. 

In a letter to the department, the chairman and ranking Democrat on the committee cited multiple concerns with the rule, including “reduced access to organic products, substantially increased organic food costs for consumers” and significant disruption to the organic feed sector. The rule would among other things expand outdoor access requirements for laying hens. 

USDA revises farm exports down. USDA is projecting that agricultural exporters will total $124.5 billion for the year that ends Sept. 30. The forecast is down $500 million from the February projection and $15 billion below last year. It would be the first year-over-year decline since 2009. Projected exports were raised for oilseeds and grains were raised but lowered for cotton as well as livestock, poultry and dairy products.

He said it. “For the farmers out here, you do an awfully good job. Now you can fall asleep while we talk about energy.” - Donald Trump, beginning his speech at the Bismarck energy conference. 

Daybreak will return on Monday June 6, 2016. Enjoy the Memorial Day weekend! 

Wednesday’s Daybreak had an incorrect link for the USDA study on organic price premiums. The correct link is here


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