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The U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Agriculture approved a new edition of the Farm Bill on April 18. The farm bill, HR 2, is required to authorize farm and food program support which expires this fall. The committee wrote strong legislation fo

Deseret News | Posted on April 26, 2018 in SARL Members and Alumni News

tate authorities will soon be taking an uncharted path in their approaches to regulating CBD oil, growth of industrial hemp, and state-directed cultivation of full-strength marijuana, thanks to a busy legislative session addressing those issues. But the details on how that policy makeover will be implemented are still undefined, which is why the Department of Agriculture & Food met Thursday with business owners, farmers and patient advocates to hear their input before the agency's rule-making process begins in earnest.

Agriculture Committee includes sheep in proposed farm bill

KTIC Radio | Posted on April 26, 2018 in Federal News

The U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Agriculture approved a new edition of the Farm Bill on April 18. The farm bill, HR 2, is required to authorize farm and food program support which expires this fall. The committee wrote strong legislation for sheep producers with new authorization of funding for minor use minor species pharmaceutical development – a top ask of the American Sheep Industry Association. This program for pharmaceuticals development and labeling for American application is critical for minor species, such as sheep.

What Canadian agriculture stands for

The Western Producer | Posted on April 26, 2018 in Agriculture News

It has been said that organizations are best defined by what they oppose versus what they support. That seems too cynical a view of the world. I want to talk about what we stand for.Canadian agriculture stands for science-based regulations and rules of trade. Farmers across this country depend on access to international markets for their livelihood.Farmers in Mortlach, Sask., must have access to Japan, Indonesia, Algeria and about 100 other countries to ensure their farms are economically viable.

SARL Members and Alumni News

The U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Agriculture approved a new edition of the Farm Bill on April 18. The farm bill, HR 2, is required to authorize farm and food program support which expires this fall. The committee wrote strong legislation fo

Deseret News | Posted on April 26, 2018

tate authorities will soon be taking an uncharted path in their approaches to regulating CBD oil, growth of industrial hemp, and state-directed cultivation of full-strength marijuana, thanks to a busy legislative session addressing those issues. But the details on how that policy makeover will be implemented are still undefined, which is why the Department of Agriculture & Food met Thursday with business owners, farmers and patient advocates to hear their input before the agency's rule-making process begins in earnest.

PA:New Law Should Help Promote Pennsylvania Farmers Use of High Tunnels the burden of having to meet state regs

Chester County  | Posted on April 25, 2018

Pennsylvania farmers, who use high tunnels to grow fresh fruits and vegetables, will no longer face the burden of having to meet state regulations intended for commercial and residential development now that Governor Wolf has signed House Bill 1486. The new law, which was a priority issue for Pennsylvania Farm Bureau (PFB) in 2018, prevents municipalities from requiring farmers to submit stormwater management plans on high tunnel structures that meet the law’s commonsense and easily understood guidelines.

Colorado and three states accuse Arizona of manipulating Colorado River supply and demand

The Denver Post | Posted on April 25, 2018

Tension over the drought-stressed Colorado River escalated into a public feud when four U.S. states accused Arizona’s largest water provider of manipulating supply and demand, potentially threatening millions of people in the United States and Mexico who rely on the river.

Tennessee Lawmakers Strip $250,000 From Memphis As Payback For Removing Confederate Statues

Nashville Public Radio | Posted on April 25, 2018

The city of Memphis could lose a quarter-million dollars as punishment for removing statues of Confederate General Nathan Bedford Forrest and Confederate President Jefferson Davis last year. The Tennessee House of Representatives voted to strip the money from next year's state budget. The sum had been earmarked to go toward planning for Memphis' bicentennial celebrations next year. The surprise move came just before legislators were to give final approval to Gov. Bill Haslam's $37 billion spending plan.

VSU ag center director named Virginia's new agriculture commissioner

The News & Advance | Posted on April 19, 2018

The executive director of Virginia State University’s Center for Agricultural Research, Engagement and Outreach has been appointed the state’s agriculture commissioner. Jewel Bronaugh was named to the post by Gov. Ralph Northam.

Agriculture News

What Canadian agriculture stands for

The Western Producer | Posted on April 26, 2018

It has been said that organizations are best defined by what they oppose versus what they support. That seems too cynical a view of the world. I want to talk about what we stand for.Canadian agriculture stands for science-based regulations and rules of trade. Farmers across this country depend on access to international markets for their livelihood.Farmers in Mortlach, Sask., must have access to Japan, Indonesia, Algeria and about 100 other countries to ensure their farms are economically viable.

Federal Reserve: Observations on the Ag Economy- April ’18

Illinois Farm Policy News | Posted on April 26, 2018

Sixth District- Atlanta– “Agriculture conditions across the District were mixed. Drought conditions improved in much of the District although light frosts in March affected some crops. Agricultural exporters indicated that the weaker dollar was having a favorable impact. On a year-over-year basis, prices paid to farmers in February were up for rice, beef, broilers, and eggs and down for corn, cotton, and soybeans.

Latest Planting in Four Years

DTN | Posted on April 26, 2018

The early rounds of the 2018 row crop season have some notable similarities to 2014. Winter temperatures were the lowest since that year in many northern and central areas, punctuated by a harsh cold wave in the first three weeks of April. Much of the Midwest and the Northern Plains had the coldest April 1-18 stretch on record. The cold, along with several occurrences of heavy and record-breaking snow, have led to fieldwork getting off to a very slow start.

Lawyers wrap up case blaming pork giant for ghastly smells

ABC News | Posted on April 26, 2018

Industrial-scale hog producers knew for decades that noxious smells from open-air sewage pits tormented neighbors but didn't change their livestock-raising methods to keep production costs low, the lawyer for farm neighbors told jurors in a federal lawsuit. The first in a series of federal suits raising accusations of nauseating hog operations in eastern North Carolina headed to a 10-member jury after attorneys summarized the evidence presented at a three-week civil trial. The test case involved 10 neighbors of one, 15,000-hog operation producing an estimated 76 tons of waste per day.

Immigration workers needed in South Dakota

KELO | Posted on April 25, 2018

Many large employers in South Dakota are facing a longstanding, critical issue. State Chamber of Commerce and Industry President Dave Owen says employers will need to look to immigration for workers. He says the state has a long tradition in doing just that.“All through the history of South Dakota, that workforce has come from not only out of state, but out of the country, with legal immigrants and legal refugees,” Owen said.

Federal News

Agriculture Committee includes sheep in proposed farm bill

KTIC Radio | Posted on April 26, 2018

The U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Agriculture approved a new edition of the Farm Bill on April 18. The farm bill, HR 2, is required to authorize farm and food program support which expires this fall. The committee wrote strong legislation for sheep producers with new authorization of funding for minor use minor species pharmaceutical development – a top ask of the American Sheep Industry Association. This program for pharmaceuticals development and labeling for American application is critical for minor species, such as sheep.

Report Looks at Trade Retaliation Impact on California

DTN | Posted on April 26, 2018

Farmers for Free Trade released a report that will highlight California concerns that retaliatory tariffs from China hurt commodities like almonds, grapes, apples, and what the group calls “many other iconic California exports.”

Russian Farmer Alters Rural Economy With Virtual Currency, as Moscow Watches Warily

Wall Street Journal | Posted on April 26, 2018

Farmer Mikhail Shlyapnikov says the best way to revive the ailing economy in this remote village is cutting financial ties to Moscow. Mr. Shlyapnikov has launched a cryptocurrency, the kolion, named after his hamlet some 80 miles southeast of Moscow, buoyed by an initial investment of a half-million dollars from investors in Russia and abroad.

U.S. sorghum armada U-turns at sea after China tariffs

Reuters | Posted on April 26, 2018

Several ships carrying cargoes of sorghum from the United States to China have changed course since Beijing slapped hefty anti-dumping deposits on U.S. imports of the grain, trade sources and a Reuters analysis of export and shipping data showed. The supply-chain pain felt by sorghum suppliers on the Pacific, Atlantic and Indian oceans underscores how quickly the mounting trade tensions between the U.S. and China can impact the global agricultural sector, which has been reeling from low commodity prices amid a global grains glut.

Soybeans symbolize the costs of a US-China trade war

Nikkei Asian Review | Posted on April 25, 2018

When the U.S. announced on April 3 plans to impose tariffs on certain Chinese goods to punish it for alleged infringement of intellectual property rights, China quickly retaliated with duties on 106 U.S. products. The surprise for the global commodities market is the inclusion of soybeans on the list. The question is whether, given the interdependence of the two countries in soybean trade, China can handle the pain the tariffs would impose. There is no doubt the tariffs will sting the U.S. if they cause a slump in exports. The U.S.

Rural News

The economic colonization of rural Anerica

Daily Yonder | Posted on April 26, 2018

The transformation of the American economy was supposed to usher in a new era of prosperity via a “rural renaissance.” Where has that dream gone and how do we bring it back? Over the past 50 years, many rural communities seem to have lost their purpose. The trend during this period has been toward fewer, larger, and more specialized farms. The result has been declining rural populations, declining demand for local markets and locally purchased inputs, and a resulting economic decay of many rural communities.

Gary MN shows small town's big talents

Daily Yonder | Posted on April 26, 2018

A forest project in northwest Minnesota highlights how a small community can partner with a university to improve an important community resource. Some other small towns are starting to take notice of the success.  The 160-acre pine forest runs along Highway 32 and holds historical significance to the community. Generations of residents have worked on the forest since it was developed as a Conservations Corps project in the 1930s. Originally a dusty area with blowing soil, the site was transformed into a pine forest.

In small town America, the public housing crisis nobody's talking about

Daily Yonder | Posted on April 26, 2018

The shuttering of public housing complexes in two small Midwestern towns raises big questions for residents, HUD and Congress. To tell the story, I could use your help. It’s a Sunday morning in late February at the tiny Baptist church atop the hill in Thebes, a remote village of about 400 people in the southernmost part of Illinois. I’m here for a story assignment, but to know people is to worship with them.

‘Frontline’ reveals ‘Trafficked’ teens slaving on farms

Boston Herald | Posted on April 25, 2018

As producers Daffodil Altan and Andres Cediel (“Rape in the Fields”) document, the young workers at Trillium Farms in Ohio, one of the nation’s largest egg producers, turning out 10 million eggs a day, found the American dream to be a nightmare. At one facility, captured on a bit of harrowing hidden camera footage, conditions were hellish, there were narrow halls barely big enough for a person, with rows atop rows of caged, squawking hens.“The manure falls in your eyes,” one worker says.Shifts started at 6 a.m. and, if workers were lucky, ended at 5 p.m.

Opioid crisis cost Washington state over $9 billion in 2016

Pew Charitable Trust | Posted on April 25, 2018

A new report states the opioid crisis has cost Washington state billions of dollars in a single year. United States Senator Patty Murray released the analysis Monday, which found that in 2016 the crisis cost the state over $9 billion in fatalities, health care spending, addiction treatment, criminal justice and lost productivity.Opioid-related deaths had the greatest impact, costing the state $7 billion in 2016. According to the news release, deaths related to opioids cost the state more than $34 billion from the years 2012-2016.

Energy News

How Trump can beat China without a trade war: Make America a renewable energy superpower

USA Today | Posted on April 26, 2018

So far we have let China dominate renewable energy industries. Why not catch up and take the lead, like we did in the space race? China is well on its way to becoming the renewable energy superpower of the future. We can still come from behind and take the lead — if you make it a national priority. Since the 2015 Paris Accord, the whole world has been moving as quickly as possible toward a clean energy future.

Despite Support From Trump, EPA Continues to Examine 15% Blend

DTN | Posted on April 25, 2018

Although President Donald Trump made clear on Thursday his support for granting a waiver to allow year-round sales of E15, the EPA told DTN on Friday the agency hasn't yet made a decision on E15. E15 fuel is a blend of 15% ethanol and 85% of gasoline. At a White House meeting Thursday focusing on agriculture and trade, Trump said his administration will approve E15.

The renewable fuel standard works for rural America and our economy

The Hill | Posted on April 19, 2018

Political posturing from a small segment of the petroleum industry has the Trump administration considering damaging changes to our most successful American energy policies that we’ve seen in decades: the renewable fuel standard. The RFS was passed by a bipartisan Congress and signed into law by President George W. Bush more than a decade ago, provides an avenue for domestic biofuels producers to gain access to the U.S. transportation fuels market, which has been monopolized by the petroleum industry for more than a century. The results of the program have been impressive.

Trump to put biofuel reform push on ice, for now

Reuters | Posted on April 19, 2018

The Trump administration will delay any moves to reform the nation’s biofuel policy for about three months, according to three sources briefed on the matter - a decision one of the sources said was meant to shield farmers worried about a potential trade war with China. The decision comes after President Donald Trump failed to broker a deal between Big Oil and Big Corn during meetings over months about the future of the U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard - a law broadly supported in the U.S. heartland that requires oil refiners to add biofuels like ethanol to the nation’s gasoline.

Annual wind energy report shows record energy production

North American Wind Power | Posted on April 19, 2018

fter strong growth in 2017, wind power now supplies more than 30% of electricity in four states and more than 10% in 14 states, according to the American Wind Energy Association’s newly released U.S. Wind Industry Annual Market Report 2017, which shows that the industry now employs a record 105,500 men and women across all 50 states. Notably, New Mexico added wind capacity at a faster rate than any other state in 2017.  According to AWEA, wind power generated a record 6.3% of U.S.

Food News

France says ‘watch your language’ on vegetarian food with ‘meat’ names

Meatingplace (free registration required) | Posted on April 25, 2018

French legislators are warning food companies that describe their vegetarian or vegan foods using terms usually associated with meat to find new ways to label such products to prevent consumer confusion.

Plant-based protein coalition fights back on label challenge

Meatingplace (free registration required) | Posted on April 25, 2018

A group of companies at the forefront of the plant-based protein movement is pushing back against calls by the U.S. Cattlemen’s Association (USCA) and others to change how they label their products. The Good Food Institute (GFI) is among those asking USDA to reject a petition from USCA urging the agency to limit the terms “beef” and “meat” to products made from slaughtered cattle, versus those originating from plants.

EU moves to ban sale of lower-quality branded food in eastern Europe

The Guardian | Posted on April 19, 2018

Brussels wants to make it illegal for food and drink multinationals to sell inferior versions of well-known brands to customers in eastern Europe, after studies suggested hundreds of products were involved in the practice. An EU directive banning so-called “dual food” was announced on Wednesday following longstanding complaints from member states in central and eastern Europe. Coca-Cola, Pepsi, HiPP baby food, Birds Eye, Lidl and Spar have denied accusations of selling lower quality goods in the east bearing identical branding to products sold in western Europe.

GAO to USDA: Take further action to reduce pathogens in meat

Meatingplace (free registration required) | Posted on April 19, 2018

The GAO said USDA has developed standards limiting the amount of salmonella and campylobacter permitted in certain meat and poultry, such as ground beef, pork carcasses and chicken breasts. But it has not developed standards for other products that are widely available, such as turkey breasts and pork chops. Further, USDA's process for deciding which products to consider for new standards is unclear because it is not fully documented, which is not consistent with federal standards for internal control, GAO said.

2018 a year for lots of meat

Brownfield Ag News | Posted on April 18, 2018

Lower prices for producers on nearly every type of meat are forecast by USDA for this year which means lower prices for consumers. The reason is bigger supplies of almost every type of meat. “We’ve got beef, pork, broilers increasing production year over year,” says Seth Meyer, USDA Outlook Board Chairman. Meyers says turkey production is the only exception, down just a little. Meyers says overall meat production this year should be higher by more than 3%. And that translates to lower prices for most livestock producers.