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Ag Today June 1, 2018

Sonoma County farm officials, animal welfare activists expect more showdowns ROBERT DIGITALE THE PRESS DEMOCRAT | May 31, 2018, 6:37PM After a massive animal welfare rally this week at a Petaluma egg farm, both Sonoma County farm leaders and a Bay Area animal rights activist foresee more showdowns at local ranches and livestock production facilities. In the aftermath of Tuesday’s peaceful demonstration, where 40 activists were arrested, the Sonoma County Farm Bureau is planning to offer new training to farmers who may face similar standoffs. “We need to help our members understand what to do when an animal rights demonstration happens on their property,” said...

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Ag Today May 31, 2018

U.S. Tariffs Prompt Anger, Retaliation From Trade Allies By William Mauldin,The Wall Street Journal Updated May 31, 2018 3:50 p.m. ET WASHINGTON—The U.S. will impose tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from Canada, Mexico and the European Union starting on Friday, the Trump administration said, raising the specter of trade war with some of Washington’s closest allies, who said they would retaliate. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Thursday said Ottawa will impose billions of dollars of tariffs on steel, aluminum and a wide range of other U.S. goods, including some food and agricultural products. Canada said it would hold consultations for two weeks...

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Ag Today May 30, 2018

Dozens of animal welfare activists arrested after large protest at Petaluma chicken farm ROBERT DIGITALE AND SUSAN MINICHIELLO THE PRESS DEMOCRAT | May 29, 2018, 2:37PM One of the largest animal welfare demonstrations ever held at a Sonoma County farm ended Tuesday with the peaceful arrests of 40 activists on suspicion of trespassing at an egg production facility northwest of Petaluma. An estimated 500 demonstrators rallied for more than three hours across the street from a farm on Liberty Road north of Rainsville Road. Along with egg production barns, the property houses the offices of Sunrise Farms, one of the North Bay’s largest egg...

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Ag Today May 29, 2018

McConnell: Senate Farm Bill May Not Include Tighter Work Requirements By Kristina Peterson and Siobhan Hughes May 25, 2018 3:15 p.m. ET,  The Wall Street Journal WASHINGTON—Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) said the Senate needs to pass a farm bill even if it doesn’t include the tighter work requirements around food stamps that have become a flashpoint in the House. While Mr. McConnell said he personally favored beefing up the work requirements for food-stamp recipients, he made clear he would be willing to pass the next five-year farm bill without them. “I personally like that,” Mr. McConnell said of the proposed requirements in...

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Ag Today May 25, 2018

Seaweed Could Help Farmers Tame Methane Emissions From Cow Burps Ezra David Romero Thursday, May 24, 2018 | Sacramento, CA | Capital Public Radio Cows don’t usually eat seaweed. But researchers at UC Davis want to change that in an effort to get the animals to burp smaller amounts of greenhouse gases. Most cows on the campus dairy are fed the usual mixture of ingredients like alfalfa and corn. But twice a day a special set of a dozen cows are given the same feed, just mixed with a small dose of crushed seaweed and molasses to sweeten the salty mix. “They are belching less,”...

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Ag Today May 24, 2018

State proposes change in monitoring status for Napa County's groundwater BARRY EBERLING beberling@napanews.com May 24, 2018 Updated 9 min ago, Napa Valley Register California says it might raise its alert level for monitoring Napa Valley groundwater to make certain local wells keep supplying water, although what — if anything — this means for the county’s current water policies is unclear. The state proposes to reclassify the Napa Valley subbasin from “medium” to “high” priority. But since it requires communities in either category to take the same steps to avoid sucking aquifers dry, the proposal may or may not have consequences. “I think at this...

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Ag Today May 23, 2018

California Today: Experts on Fire Season 2018 Discuss the ‘New Normal’ By Charles McDermid, May 23, 2018, The New York Times Rusty Witwer has the soot and flames of California wildfires seared into his blood. Over more than 40 fire seasons, he’s watched “the chain saws get lighter and the helicopters get bigger.” In 1968, he started as a 17-year-old with the California Department of Forestry, now Cal Fire. He went on to lead the Tahoe Hotshots, an elite U.S. Forest Service fire crew, for 16 years. Mr. Witwer, 68, said that he’d “never bet his pink slip” predicting a fire season like the...

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Ag Today May 22, 2018

Farmers 'cautiously optimistic' after China trade deal, citrus hurting Eric Woomer, ewoomer@visaliatimesdelta.com Published 2:46 p.m. PT May 21, 2018 | Updated 3:07 p.m. PT May 21, 2018 The Trump administration sent mixed signals Monday about a potential trade deal with China as senior economic officials defended a decision to lift sanctions in exchange for promises from Beijing to ease trade barriers. Administration officials announced over the weekend the U.S. would hold off on $150 billion in proposed tariffs after Chinese negotiators agreed to increase how much the country purchases in American goods. Critics, including some Trump allies, said it was too soon to make...

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Ag Today May 21, 2018

House Rejects Farm Bill as Some Conservatives Withhold Support By Siobhan Hughes and Jesse Newman - Updated May 18, 2018 7:06 p.m. ET, The Wall Street Journal WASHINGTON—The House defeated a Republican-written farm bill on Friday after GOP leaders couldn’t win over a bloc of their party’s most conservative lawmakers, who were demanding a separate vote soon on a measure to toughen immigration enforcement. The conservatives, members of the House Freedom Caucus, broke with their party even as leaders tried to persuade them that an immigration measure they wanted to bring to the floor would come up in June as part of a...

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Ag Today May 18, 2018

China Agrees to Buy More U.S. Goods and Services By Bob Davis in Washington and Lingling Wei in Beijing Updated May 18, 2018 8:53 p.m. ET The U.S. and China wrapped up a second day of talks with Beijing agreeing to buy more U.S. goods and services but resisting demands that it slash by more than half the vast trade deficit, according to people briefed on the talks. The Chinese were wary of committing to specific purchases, said the people, but were looking for a way to ease trade tensions between the two nations, which have rattled markets globally. Earlier on Friday, White House...

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