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White House wheat growing fast

The wheat in First Lady Michelle Obama’s kitchen garden is getting taller, as shown by this photo posted on Twitter last week by Sam Kass, the assistant chef who is also the executive director of “Let’s Move,” the campaign against childhood obesity. Read More...

Punke: U.S. willing to work on food security proposal

As part of an attempt to come up with an agreement that World Trade Organization trade ministers can declare a success when they meet in Bali in December, the United States is willing to consider supporting a “work program” on international food security, U.S. Ambassador to the WTO Michael Punke said in Geneva today, according to a news release from the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative. Read More...

G-8 countries release ag data action plans

The G-8 countries today released their action plans for more widespread release of government data on agriculture, Agriculture Undersecretary for Research, Education and Economics Catherine Woteki said today in a call to reporters from the G-8 conference on open data being held at the World Bank. Read More...

Merrigan heads to Wisconsin on last USDA trip

Agriculture Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan is leaving today for Wisconsin to spend her last days in office at a conference on women in agriculture called WomenShare2013. Read More...

Consumer Reports releases turkey study

Consumer Reports today released a study of ground turkey that it said found potential disease-causing organisms in most of the 257 samples it tested, many of which proved resistant to more than three antibiotic drug classes. But the National Turkey Federation said the sample was too small. Read More...

Conservation groups release principles

A coalition of conservation groups today released a document of principles for the new farm bill that they have sent to the House and Senate Agriculture committees. Read More...

USDA launches data-sharing website

The Agriculture Department is launching a data-sharing website as part of an effort to encourage governments around the world to share agricultural data, particularly for the benefit of developing countries, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said today. Read More...

Lucas plans farm bill with $38 billion in cuts

House Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas, R-Okla., told The Hagstrom Report today that he is planning a farm bill that will cut $38 billion in spending over 10 years, $3 billion more than last year, with $20 billion coming from the food stamps account and $18 billion from the rest of the bill. Read More...

Goodlatte introduces Ag Guestworker Act

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte, R-Va., today introduced an agricultural guestworker program bill, but the Agriculture Workforce Coalition, which represents farm employers, called it only a first step in the process and the United Farm Workers said it opposes the measure because it would recreate the old bracero program. Read More...

WTO race comes down to Brazilian, Mexican

The next director general of the World Trade Organization will be a Latin American. Read More...

Raymond named communications chief at International Food Information Council

The International Food Information Council has named Matt Raymond as its director of communications. Read More...

Farmers, union must work for pass overall immigration bill

The Agriculture Workforce Coalition and the United Farm Workers have reached a substantial accomplishment in their agreement that led to the farmworker provision introduced in the Senate immigration reform bill, but their success depends on whether they can join with other groups to convince Congress to pass the overall bill, Jerry Hagstrom wrote in a column published in National Journal Daily on Thursday. Read More...

U.N. agencies made citizens of Rome

The three Rome-based UN agencies — the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the World Food Programme (WFP) — were made honorary citizens of Rome on Sunday. Read More...

Merrigan says goodbye amidst ‘Know Your Farmers, Know Your Flowers’

If there are any differences between Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan they were not visible Wednesday at Merrigan's departure ceremony and party in the patio of the Jamie Whitten headquarters building. Read More...

Stabenow, Reid: Senate to take up farm bill in May

Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., said today that she plans to hold a mark up of a new farm bill in May, and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., signaled that he intends to bring it to the Senate floor that same month. Read More...

Chefs urge Congress to pass farm bill with help for SNAP participants to buy fruits, vegetables

A coalition of chefs and local food advocates under the banner of Wholesome Wave traveled to Capitol Hill on Tuesday to urge Congress to pass a farm bill with a provision to help make the cost of fruits and vegetables from farmers’ markets cheaper for food stamp recipients. Read More...

Boxer, DeFazio introduce genetic food labeling bill

Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., and Rep. Peter DeFazio, D-Ore., today introduced the Genetically Engineered Food Right-to-Know Act, according to a news release from the Center for Food Safety, which favors labeling. Read More...

ERS: SNAP makes little difference in adult dietary choices

Low-income adults who participate in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, better known as SNAP or food stamps, eat almost the same as people who do not participate in the program, but there are some differences in their food choices, the Agriculture Department’s Economic Research Service said in a study released today. Read More...

Thune, Stutzman introduce alternative bill to cut SNAP

Rep. Marlin Stutzman, R-Ind., and Sen. John Thune, R-S.D., have introduced a bill that would cut the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, better known as SNAP or food stamps, somewhat differently than Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., and Rep. Randy Neugebauer, R-Texas, would cut it in their bill. Read More...

Baucus to introduce trade bill

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont., said today he is working to renew Trade Promotion Authority and job training program Trade Adjustment Assistance and set a target to introduce a bipartisan bill by June. Read More...

Roberts releases OIG report critical of SNAP analysis

Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., this week released a report from USDA’s Office of Inspector General that USDA's Food and Nutrition Service has not effectively assessed the impact of additional SNAP spending through the American Recovery and Investment Act.
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NASS won’t issue Puerto Rico report

The Agriculture Department’s National Agricultural Statistics Service announced Monday that it will not publish the Puerto Rico Various Agricultural Statistics 2012 Summary, scheduled for April 29, due to changes in the availability of the data from the Puerto Rico Department of Agriculture. Read More...

Feinstein: AgJobs immigration provision needs no amendments

The farmworker section of the immigration reform bill should pass Congress without amendment, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing Monday, while some Republican senators were critical of the overall bill. Read More...

Obama honors FFA member at White House Science Fair

An FFA member from Wyoming who wrote a paper on an anerobic digester and students who bred algae in a bedroom and created a bicycle-powered water sanitation system were among the 100 students from around the country honored at the White House Science Fair on Monday. Read More...

Crop indemnities reach almost $17 billion

Federal crop insurance indemnities for 2012 have reached a record $16.99 billion, according to the Agriculture Department's Risk Management Agency, The Des Moines Register Online reported Monday. Read More...

FDA refutes EWG antibiotic resistant meat study

The Food and Drug Administration on Monday issued a statement that a recent Environmental Working Group study on antibiotic resistance is misleading. Read More...

EWG releases ‘dirty dozen’ produce list

The Environmental Working Group on Monday released a list of fruits and vegetables and the pesticide levels EWG says may be found in each. Read More...

USDA to provide disaster aid to Superstorm Sandy victims

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced Monday that USDA will provide disaster assistance valued at $209 million to help farmers, land owners and communities recover from the effects of Superstorm Sandy in 12 states. Read More...

Experimental wheat grows at the White House

Tourists who gaze through the fence of the South Lawn of the White House these days can see wheat growing for the first time in the White House kitchen garden. Read More...

Senate Judiciary Committee immigration hearing today

United Farm Workers President Arturo Rodriguez and National Council of Farmer Co-operatives President Chuck Conner will be the lead witnesses at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on immigration reform today. Read More...

Senate Finance to hold TPP hearing

The Senate Finance Committee will hold a hearing on Wednesday on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, Senate Finance Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont., announced late Friday. Read More...

House Agriculture Approps sets three budget hearings

The House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee will hold three hearings this week on Agriculture Department and Food and Drug Administration budget requests. Read More...

TPP ministers agree on Japan entry

The trade ministers of the 11 Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) countries meeting in Surabaya, Indonesia on Saturday agreed by consensus that Japan can join the TPP negotiations upon completion of current members’ respective domestic processes, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative said in a news release.
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WTO DG race tightens, U.S. officials stress need for Bali agreement

As candidates drop out of the race for the director general of the World Trade Organization, possibly leading to a race between Brazil and Indonesia, U.S. officials said this week said that WTO member countries must work quickly if there is to be an agreement to be considered by trade ministers at a meeting in Bali in December. Read More...

U.S. wheat arrives in Middle East for Syrian relief

An American ship carrying enough wheat to feed more than 1 million people for four months has delivered its cargo for distribution in Syria as part of the emergency food assistance provided by the United Nations World Food Programme, WFP said in a news release on Sunday. Read More...

Franken jokes about milking cows

Sen. Al Franken, D-Minn., usually avoids making jokes in the Senate, apparently out of fear that his background as a comedian and writer for Saturday Night Live will prevent people from taking him seriously. Read More...

Vilsack: USDA to ‘institutionalize’ Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said last week that USDA will make the “Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food” initiative a permanent part of activities through the department. Read More...

Senate Ag approps sets May 9 hearing

The Senate Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee will hold a hearing on May 9, with testimony from Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. Read More...

Napolitano equates farm workers with DREAMers

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano today tied a path for legalization and citizenship for farm workers to that for the DREAMers, the young people who have been brought to the United States illegally as children and are now in college. Read More...

Vilsack eats lunch at his desk

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack told the North American Agricultural Journalists recently that he eats lunch at his desk most days. Read More...

FSA county employees ‘excited’ about possible immigration role

Employees of the Farm Service Agency county offices are “excited” about the immigration reform proposal that would make them the point of contact for farmers in reporting their labor needs and keeping track of immigrant farm workers, the head of the National Association of Farm Service Agency County Office Employees told The Hagstrom Report today. Read More...

Vilsack appoints Hunter, McCoy and Wheelock

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced three Agriculture Department staff appointments today. Read More...

House Ag markup set for May 15

House Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas, R-Okla., plans to mark up the farm bill on May 15. Read More...

FDA provides more comment time on Food Safety Modernization Act produce rule

The Food and Drug Administration will extend the comment period for the Food Safety Modernization Act proposed rule on produce by 120 days beyond the current May 16 deadline, FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg said today. Read More...

Taylor advised Monsanto not to fight labeling

Mike Taylor, the FDA deputy commissioner for food whose credibility has often been questioned because he worked for Monsanto in the late 1990s, confirmed this week that he advised Monsanto to drop its opposition to the labeling of biotech foods and left the company because the company did not listen to him. Read More...

Produce Marketing Association hires Gorny

The Produce Marketing Association has hired Jim Gorny, senior adviser for the Office of Food Safety at the Food and Drug Administration, as its vice president of food safety and technology, starting on May 1. Read More...

Rep. McCarthy: Feeling better about legislative goals

House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., told the National Restaurant Association today that he is “feeling more positive” about accomplishing legislative goals now than he was four months ago. Read More...

Farm Bureau says direct payment cuts are unfair

The American Farm Bureau Federation told Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack this week that USDA’s plan to cut direct payments to offset the sequestration cuts for other farm programs is “simply not fair.” Read More...

Farm groups gather to announce agreement on immigration bill

It is a historic day in the nation’s capital when the United Farm Workers, Western Growers, the United Fresh Produce Association, the National Milk Producers Federation and other farm groups hold a joint press conference to announce their support for a piece of legislation. But that’s what happened today when the union and the farm groups gathered together at the National Press Club to announce that they all support a comprehensive immigration reform bill that includes provisions that they say would ensure, a legal, stable agricultural workforce. Read More...

Sugar growers release Brazil study

The American Sugar Alliance today released a study that it says shows that a complex web of Brazilian government programs provides nearly $2.5 billion per year in sugar subsidies, giving Brazil, with nearly 50 percent of global sugar exports, an advantage in international sugar markets. Read More...

House ag to hold hearing on horticulture

The House Agriculture Horticulture, Research, Biotechnology and Foreign Agriculture Subcommittee will hold a hearing on Wednesday to review horticulture priorities for the 2013 farm bill. Read More...

SNA names Patricia Montague CEO

The School Nutrition Association’s board of directors today named Patricia Montague as its new chief executive officer, effective immediately Read More...

Immigration reform bill release, hearing delayed

The “gang of eight” senators who have written a bipartisan immigration reform bill today postponed a news conference to release the bill due to the bombings in Boston, and the Senate Judiciary Committee postponed a scheduled Wednesday hearing on the bill until Friday. Read More...

EWG reports on bacteria in supermarket meat

The Environmental Working Group today released a study charging that a round of tests by federal scientists published in February “has documented startlingly high percentages of supermarket meat containing antibiotic-resistant bacteria.” Read More...

Bittleman aims to bring farmers, EPA together

Sarah Bittleman, the new agriculture counselor at the Environmental Protection Agency, is determined to improve communications between rural America and an agency that many farmers consider both economically and culturally threatening. “My door is open,” Bittleman told The Hagstrom Report in an interview. “My title is agriculture counselor to the administrator, but in order to me to counsel EPA on agriculture I need to hear from the farmers,” she said. Read More...

Aderholt shows little enthusiasm for food aid change

House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman Robert Aderholt, R-Ala., showed little enthusiasm today for the Obama administration’s proposal for shifting food aid programs to development assistance at the U.S. Agency for International Development Read More...

Farm, worker and agribusiness likely to support immigration proposal

A panel of farm, farm worker and agribusiness leaders said today they expect to support an immigration reform proposal that is scheduled to be announced by the “gang of eight” senators on Tuesday. Read More...

More ag immigration details leak out

As the “gang of eight” senators prepare to release their immigration proposal Tuesday and the Senate Judiciary Committee plans a hearing Wednesday, more details of the agriculture immigration proposal have begun to surface. Read More...

King, Huelskamp re-introduce bill to overturn school meals rule

Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, and Rep. Tim Huelskamp, R-Kan., have re-introduced their bill to repeal the USDA rule implementing the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act that sets caloric limits on what children are served in public schools. Read More...

Bulls to run in nine American cities

An American version of the Running of the Bulls through the streets of Pamplona, Spain, has been founded in the United States by two disgruntled attorneys who left corporate life, saying they want to “grab life by the horns.” Read More...

Neugebauer introduces Roberts’ food stamp bill in House

Rep. Randy Neugebauer, R-Texas, last week introduced a bill to reduce food stamp spending that is a companion to the bill introduced by Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan. Read More...

Enthusiasm for Japan in TPP continues

Two agriculture groups, the National Oilseed Processors Association and the International Dairy Foods Association, late Friday joined the chorus of farm groups that applauded the U.S. decision to welcome Japan to the Trans-Pacific Partnership talks, while the Center for Strategic and International Studies explained some of reason that Japan’s entry is so important. Read More...

Former officials endorse Obama food aid proposal

Former Agriculture secretaries Ann Veneman and Dan Glickman and former U.S. Agency for International Development administrators Andrew Natsios and Brian Atwood are among the prominent officials who have signed an endorsement of President Barack Obama’s proposal to change the U.S. food aid program. Read More...

Senate ag approps to hear Hamburg

The Senate Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee will hold a hearing Thursday on the Obama administration's fiscal year 2014 budget request for the Food and Drug Administration. Read More...

United States welcomes Japan to TPP and bilateral trade negotiations

The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative announced today that the United States has completed bilateral consultations with Japan regarding Japan’s entry into the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade negotiation, and that the United States is planning on participating in both TPP and bilateral negotiations with Japan. Read More...

Congressional farm leaders support keeping sugar program

Three key farm leaders in Congress said this week that they support continuing the current sugar program in the next farm bill, even though for the first time in years the Agriculture Department is preparing to spend money to keep sugar prices up.
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House ag approps to hear Vilsack

The House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee will hold a hearing on the fiscal year 2014 USDA budget request on Tuesday. Read More...

Agreement reached on farm worker immigration bill

Senators working on the farm worker section of a comprehensive immigration reform bill, the Agriculture Workforce Coalition representing growers, and the United Farm Workers reached agreement on a farm worker immigration bill late today. Read More...

USDA to help establish summer child feeding sites

The Agriculture Department wants to increase the number of sites offering summer feeding programs this year and will provide intensive technical assistance to expand the reach of the program in five states with high levels of rural or urban food insecurity or historically low program participation rates, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said in a call to reporters today. Read More...

Agreement reached on farm worker section of immigration bill

Key senators working on the farm worker section of a comprehensive immigration reform bill, the Agriculture Workforce Coalition representing growers, and the United Farm Workers have reached agreement on that section of a bill, The Hagstom Report has learned. Read More...

Punke: Doha ag negotiations ‘dire’

U.S. Ambassador to the World Trade Organization Michael Punke said Wednesday that the prospects for a package of achievements that WTO member country trade ministers could approve at their scheduled meeting in Bali in December is “grim” and that the prospects for agriculture negotiations is “even more dire.” Read More...

Shah promotes Obama food aid proposal

U.S. Agency for International Development Administrator Rajiv Shah on Wednesday promoted the Obama administration’s proposal to shift the Food for Peace program from commodity purchases to cash assistance, but said convincing Congress to keep up the budget for cash assistance would depend on the program’s performance. Read More...

Cochran defends food stamps

Senate Agriculture Committee ranking member Thad Cochran, R-Miss., said food stamps should remain in the farm bill and defended the program, Jerry Hagstrom wrote in his column in National Journal Daily today. Read More...

Marcus named CFTC general counsel

Commodity Futures Trading Commission Chairman Gary Gensler announced Tuesday that Jonathan Marcus has been named the agency’s general counsel. Read More...

Lugar at Georgetown, has established center and academy

Former Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind., who is serving at the Georgetown Public Policy Institute this spring as a visiting distinguished professor of public policy, recently became a counselor at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and announced the formation of his own Washington-based Lugar Center on global issues. Read More...

Lugar, Glickman, Weber support food aid changes, but express caution

Former Sen. Richard Lugar, R-Ind., and former Reps. Dan Glickman, D-Kan., and Vin Weber, R-Minn., said Wednesday that they support the Obama administration’s proposal to change the food aid program, but also urged caution in making the changes. Read More...

To push farm bill, USDA plans no Brazil payment

In an effort to force Congress to pass a farm bill this year, President Barack Obama’s fiscal year 2014 budget does not include a provision to make a payment to Brazil to avoid the retaliatory tariffs that Brazil has the right to impose because it won a case over U.S. cotton subsidies in the World Trade Organization. Read More...

Food aid proposal could complicate farm bill

In a move that could complicate enactment of a new farm bill, President Barack Obama today proposed eliminating funding for the P.L. 480 Title II Food for Peace international food aid program and replacing it with a new system of using cash to buy American and foreign commodities. Read More...

Details of Obama’s food aid proposal

Instead of requesting money for P.L. 480 Title II to buy American commodities and ship them, President Barack Obama’s fiscal year 2014 budget requests that Congress provide money for three other assistance accounts. Read More...

Food aid groups split on proposal

The Obama administration proposal is the result of a longstanding debate in agricultural and development circles over how to handle food aid. The debate has split U.S. supporters of food aid and those views were reflected in statements today in reaction to the proposal. Read More...

Maritime interests blast food aid proposal

USA Maritime, a coalition of ship-owning companies, maritime labor organizations and maritime trade associations engaged in a public-private partnership with the U.S. Merchant Marine, said it opposes the proposal because it “effectively ends the PL-480 Food for Peace program.” Read More...

NCIS releases crop insurance Q&A

The crop insurance industry today released a new online question-and-answer information page about the industry. Read More...

Harris Sherman leaving USDA to return west

Agriculture Undersecretary for Natural Resources and Environment Harris Sherman announced Monday that he will be leaving USDA. As undersecretary, Sherman has overseen the U.S. Forest Service and the Natural Resources Conservation Service. Read More...

Stabenow still wants April markup

Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., today reaffirmed her intention to hold a markup of the farm bill in April, but noted that negotiations on the commodity title are not complete. Read More...

Vilsack: FSA, local offices could have role in tracking guest workers

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said today that immigration reform is vital to the future of American agriculture and rural America, and suggested that the USDA’s Farm Service Agency and other local offices could play a role in tracking guest workers who come to the United States. Read More...

Farm Bureau releases farm bill proposal

The American Farm Bureau Federation today released a farm bill proposal that its board approved over the weekend. Read More...

Food aid groups fight administration proposal

Amidst reports that President Barack Obama’s budget will call for large-scale changes to U.S. food aid, humanitarian groups that use the aid for development purposes are fighting back. Read More...

Report: Arab nations should improve grain storage and consider reserves

To stabilize their supplies of imported wheat, Arab countries should improve their port and storage facilities and consider strategic grain reserves, according to a World Bank report presented today at the John Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies agricultural seminar series. Read More...

Christie Vilsack joins USAID as senior adviser

Christie Vilsack, the former Iowa first lady who ran unsuccessfully against Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, and who is the wife of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, has gone to work at the U.S. Agency for International Development. Read More...

First lady plants wheat in White House garden

First Lady Michelle Obama today planted wheat by hand in the White House kitchen garden and then watered it. Crouching by signs reading “club wheat” and “bread wheat,” the first lady scratched rows in the dirt so that she and the children could put the seeds in the ground. It is the first commodity to be grown in the White House garden.
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Elementary school students treated to garden work

First Lady Michelle Obama invited children from six elementary schools to Washington today to help with the fifth planting of the kitchen garden she established after moving into the White House. Read More...

Veterans Sustainable Agriculture group lends a hand

First Lady Michelle Obama and the children who planted the White House kitchen garden today were assisted by representatives of Veterans Sustainable Agriculture Training, a southern California program that trains service men and women who are re-entering civilian life for the sustainable organic agriculture industry. Read More...

Dombalis moves to Farm to School Network

Helen Dombalis, the policy associate for marketing, food systems and rural development at the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition for the past two years, has become the policy and strategic partnerships director for the National Farm to School Network. Read More...

United Fresh CEO takes plunge for promotion

United Fresh CEO Tom Stenzel did a tandem skydive onto the deck of the USS Midway, where the United Fresh convention opening party will be held.
Promoting farm and agribusiness meetings may never been the same after United Fresh Produce Association CEO Tom Stenzel’s skydive to promote the group’s meeting in San Diego in May. Read More...

Bode to head Corn Refiners Association

Washington attorney John Bode will become president and CEO of the Corn Refiners Association on May 6. Read More...

Ag immigration discussions continue

Negotiations between farm and farm labor groups and members of Congress on immigration reform are continuing, and the lack of a farm labor component in the agreement between the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and labor unions did not signal a problem, key farm and labor leaders have told The Hagstrom Report. Read More...

Aide: Stabenow plans April markup

Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., plans to hold a markup on a new farm bill before April 26, when Congress is scheduled to leave for a one-week recess, a Senate Agriculture Committee aide said. Read More...

Gillibrand, Collins to introduce dairy price bill

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., announced today that she and Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, will introduce a bill to change the way dairy prices are set, and that she will also reintroduce bills she sponsored last year to help small dairy producers. Read More...

FSA: Direct payments for all crop farmers to be cut

The Agriculture Department will cut the direct payments for all crop farmers by 8.5 percent this year, not just for farmers who would be required to pay back certain other payments, a representative for the USDA’s Farm Service Agency has confirmed to The Hagstrom Report. Read More...

2012 crop insurance indemnities at $16.1 billion

Crop insurance indemnities for the 2012 crop year have reached $16.1 billion, the Agriculture Department’s Risk Management Agency reported this week. Read More...

Michelle Obama to kids at egg roll: Eat your vegetables

As the Washington Post reported today that Michelle Obama is considering wading into more contentious issues in President Barack Obama’s second term, the first lady hosted the annual White House Easter Egg Roll with a theme of “Be Healthy, Be Active, Be You,” and urged children to eat their vegetables and get exercise. Read More...

USTR: Substantial progress on barriers to ag trade

The Obama administration has made substantial progress in convincing other countries to drop the non-tariff animal and plant health barriers to trade that are officially known as sanitary and phytosanitary or SPS barriers, acting U.S. Trade Representative Demetrios Marantis said today, as he sent three new reports on trade barriers to Congress. Read More...