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WTO rules in favor of U.S. over India in poultry dispute


October 14, 2014 | U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman announced today that a World Trade Organization dispute settlement panel has found in favor of the United States in a case challenging a ban India placed on various U.S. agricultural products — such as poultry meat, eggs, and live pigs — on the grounds that it was needed to protect against avian influenza. …

First Lady, kids harvest White House kitchen garden


October 14, 2014 | First Lady Michelle Obama led students from Arizona, California, Ohio and Washington, D.C., today in harvesting the White House kitchen garden. They were joined by a group of chefs to cook the harvested food, and the first lady announced that all 54 winners of this year’s Kids’ “State Dinner” have been paired with chefs in their communities to host free and healthy cooking demonstrations this fall. …

Obama, SNA continue disagreement on school meals rules


October 14, 2014 | In declaring this week as National School Lunch Week, President Barack Obama has emphasized the importance of healthier eating while the School Nutrition Association continues to call for changes to the rules implemented under the 2010 Healthy Hunger Free Kids Act. …

Kitchen Garden on tour of White House grounds this weekend


October 14, 2014 | The White House has announced it will open its gardens and grounds including First Lady Michelle Obama’s kitchen garden to visitors on Saturday, October 18 from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. EDT, and Sunday, October 19 from 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. EDT. …

PBS to air ag antibiotics documentary


October 14, 2014 | PBS this evening will air a documentary exploring the issue of antibiotics in raising animals. …

USDA’s healthy cafeterias get favorable online reviews

October 10, 2014 | The Agriculture Department’s cafeterias, whose menus were revamped in 2013 to make them healthier, have gotten little-noticed rave reviews from tourists on the online review site Trip Advisor. …

STB requires more data reporting on rail shipments


October 9, 2014 | Continuing to react to rail car shortages and delays in the Midwest, the Surface Transportation Board on Wednesday required that all railroads nationwide reveal more data about shipment delays of all products — including those from agriculture, energy and other commodities — on October 22. …

School lunch debate continues


October 9, 2014 | The drama over school meals continued Wednesday, following the online publication of The New York Times Magazine article “How School Lunch Became the Latest Political Battleground.” …

Tester leads senators in COOL letter


October 9, 2014 | The Senate may be out of session for another month, but Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., has led 31 of his colleagues to sign a letter urging Senate Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., and ranking member Richard Shelby, R-Ala., to reject efforts to weaken or suspend country-of-origin labeling for red meat in any fiscal 2015 appropriations legislation. …

USDA to expand eligibility and size limits on loans


October 9, 2014 | The Agriculture Department this week announced plans to expand eligibility and increase lending limits for beginning and family farmers. …

National Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony set


October 9, 2014 | The National Park Service and the National Park Foundation announced today that the 92nd annual National Christmas Tree Lighting on the White House Ellipse at President’s Park will be held Thursday, December 4 at 5 p.m. …

NFU hires new staff and North Bridge Communications


October 9, 2014 | The National Farmers Union has hired several new employees and also brought on North Bridge Communications to manage its public affairs relations. …

New York Times: Klobuchar recants letter on pizza in school lunch


October 8, 2014 | Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., appears to regret the role that she played in the congressional fight over pizza in the school lunch program, the New York Times Magazine reported Tuesday in a lengthy account of the battles over the content of school meals. …

United Fresh refocuses foundation on child nutrition


October 8, 2014 | The United Fresh Produce Association board has decided to recast its foundation to focus solely on health and nutrition, and has made staff changes to implement the change. …

USDA releases report on the biobased rural economy


October 8, 2014 | The Agriculture Department today issued a report on the rural biobased economy called “Why Biobased?” …

EPA extends WOTUS comment period


October 8, 2014 | The Environmental Protection Agency has extended the comment period on the controversial Waters of the United States rule from October 20 until November 14. …

Groups ask OMB to finalize catfish rule


October 8, 2014 | Food & Water Watch, the Center for Foodborne Illness Research & Prevention, the Consumer Federation of America, the National Consumers League and the United Food & Commercial Workers International Union Tuesday urged the Office of Management and Budget to finalize the rule for the Agriculture Department’s Food Safety and Inspection Service to take over inspection of catfish from the Food and Drug Administration. …

Humane Society establishes Oklahoma tie


October 8, 2014 | The Humane Society of the United States announced Tuesday that it had established an Oklahoma agriculture council, its eighth. …

Ohio university now 1890 land-grant institution


October 8, 2014 | Central State University in Wilberforce, Ohio, has been designated a 1890 land-grant institution, and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack celebrated the designation Tuesday at an event at the school. …

George Mason schedules food security conference


October 8, 2014 | George Mason University’s School of Policy, Government, and International Affairs has scheduled a Summit on Global Food Security and Health event to be held October 16 from noon to 4:45 pm at GMU’s Arlington Campus. …

Consumer Reports: GMO ingredients pervasive in ‘natural’ foods


October 7, 2014 | In a study to be published today, Consumer Reports found that “Virtually all of the samples we tested of products that made only a ‘natural’ claim did have a substantial amount of genetically modified organisms.” ...

Canada claims progress on produce financial protection


October 7, 2014 | The Canadian government has made progress in developing a system to protect U.S. suppliers of fresh produce to Canada if a buyer fails to pay for a shipment or declares bankruptcy, and the U.S. government’s recent decision to require Canadian entities to present a surety bond in the case of a complaint is “contrary to the spirit” of an agreement to resolve the issue, a Canadian Embassy spokeswoman told The Hagstrom Report on Monday. …

Rural residents less likely to be onlin

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October 7, 2014 | Half of the Americans who don’t use the Internet are from rural areas, a disproportionately high percentage, according to two recently released studies. …

Monsanto’s Grant, Hershey’s Bilbrey, Apple’s Jackson address corporate trust at Clinton Global Initiative


October 7, 2014 | NEW YORK CITY — Three familiar faces in agriculture — Monsanto Chairman and CEO Hugh Grant, Hershey President and CEO John Bilbrey, and former Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson, now with Apple computers — all attempted to address the reputation of corporations and their executives on the environment at the recent Clinton Global Initiative meeting here. ...