Ag Today January 16, 2019
U.S. lettuce industry, wary of E. coli, wants FDA back on the job [Washington Post]
...The multiple romaine lettuce disasters have exposed the complexity of the food system, in which a head of lettuce goes through so many facilities and is potentially mixed with so much other leafy produce that it can be impossible to trace the origin of a salad. The outbreaks remain mysterious....That’s a source of consternation for the $2 billion leafy greens industry, which desperately wants to avoid a repeat of what happened last year and is counting on the FDA for help. But because of the federal...
Ag Today January 15, 2018
Trump defends trade policies to farmers feeling the pinch [New York Times]
President Trump, seeking to shore up his base of support in rural America, promised farmers on Monday that “the greatest harvest is yet to come” and insisted that the pain they were experiencing from his economic policies would ultimately make them better off. In a speech to the American Farm Bureau Federation at its annual convention in New Orleans, Mr. Trump asked farmers to be patient as he tried to rewrite trade agreements with China, Europe, Canada and Mexico and as he battled with congressional Democrats over immigration….In a...
Ag Today January 14, 2019
Shutdown hurts farmers, but many stick with Trump [Bloomberg News]
Farmers are used to playing the long game. Bad weather comes and goes, prices rise and fall, but they are a patient lot. So it is with their support for Donald Trump. That's the signal from farmers these days during the partial government shutdown that's keeping some growers from filing for payments to help them overcome crop tariffs resulting from Trump's trade war with China. On Monday, when Trump speaks to the American Farm Bureau in New Orleans, he is likely to face an audience willing to give him the benefit...
Ag Today January 11, 2019
Fight over water heads to court: Irrigation districts sue state board [Modesto Bee]
As expected, a state plan to require higher flows for salmon in the Tuolumne, Stanislaus and Merced rivers has spawned a flurry of lawsuits from irrigation districts in the Northern San Joaquin Valley, charging that the plan won’t help the fish but will cause extensive economic harm. Thursday, the San Joaquin Tributaries Authority filed a detailed suit in Tuolumne County on behalf of its members, including the Turlock, Oakdale and South San Joaquin irrigation districts and the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission….The Modesto Irrigation District filed a separate...
Ag Today January 10, 2019
US Supreme Court declines involvement in state egg law cases [Associated Press]
The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to get involved in a legal dispute in which 15 states are seeking to strike down laws in California and Massachusetts that require larger living areas for some farm animals. The attorney general’s office in Missouri, which spearheaded one of the lawsuits, vowed Tuesday to continue fighting for local farmers and consumers and said it was considering the next step. President Donald Trump’s Department of Justice had urged the Supreme Court not to accept original jurisdiction over the states’ lawsuits. It said the...
Ag Today January 9, 2019
Newsom inherits a ‘whole bunch of headaches’ despite last-minute water deals by Brown [Sacramento Bee]
…Yet as Gavin Newsom takes over as governor, the state of water in California seems as unsettled as ever. The centerpiece agreement Brown made — a giant compromise on reallocating water to help the fish — ran into immediate trouble….The board agreed to reconsider the compromise in the coming months, but opposition to Brown’s plan was instantaneous….Newsom has talked about scaling back the Delta tunnels project but otherwise has said little about water. He barely mentioned the topic in his inaugural speech Monday.
Strawberry, flower, grape growers...
Ag Today January 8, 2018
As government shutdown persists, Americans feel the bite [New York Times]
The impact of a partial government shutdown began to ripple across the economy as it stretched into Day 17, with mortgage applications delayed, public companies unable to get approval to raise capital and thousands of Secret Service agents expected to show up for work without pay....The standoff is beginning to inflict pain on Americans, whose lives are affected, in one way or another, by the federal government....Farmers who planned to apply for subsidies to help mitigate the effect of Mr. Trump’s trade war must wait to get paid until the...
Ag Today January 7, 2019
As trade talks begin, Trump sees China’s economic weakness as U.S. strength [New York Times]
President Trump is cheerleading his way past the economic warning signs that have rattled financial markets and unnerved economists, insisting that the United States has an advantage in a crucial first round of trade negotiations beginning on Monday in Beijing….Chinese officials appear set to offer a mix of concessions, including reducing some tariffs on American goods, as they try to defuse trade tensions ahead of a March 2 deadline, when tariffs on $200 billion worth of imports will increase to 25 percent from 10 percent.…Top administration...
Ag Today January 4, 2019
Will Gavin Newsom change the state’s water course? Fish and farmers will soon find out [Los Angeles Times]
…Despite a flurry of activity, Brown is leaving plenty of unfinished water business as he heads to his ranch in the Sacramento Valley….Newsom has previously said he favors a scaled-down tunnel project. Whether he reappoints state water board chair Felicia Marcus will signal whether he wants the board to stand firm or back down on the flow requirements. His picks for top posts in the Natural Resources Agency will determine whether his administration goes along with a potential weakening of delta protections by...
January 3, 2018
Government shutdown closes county's federal offices, national parks [Bakersfield Californian]
Some Kern County workers have not escaped the clutches of the ongoing federal government shutdown. Several agencies and organizations currently are closed due to the shutdown, which began on Dec. 22, with some federal employees on furlough until funding is restored….The California Farm Bureau Federation, a trade group that lobbies for government policies that benefit farmers and ranchers, said local offices of the U.S. Department of Agriculture on California Avenue also are closed….Besides the USDA offices, the Bakersfield field office of the Bureau of Land Management also is closed.
Exclusive: Key U.S....