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Friday, October 17,2014

Ebola guts food production in West Africa; impact very severe

by Chris Clayton - DTN
While the United States finds itself coming to grips with a handful of Ebola cases, agricultural ministers in West Africa say the virus is ripping through their countries not only through infection, but also further exacerbating hunger and wrecking any plans to revitalize the region’s farm production.

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Friday, October 3,2014

Crunch time for beef demand

by Chris Clayton - DTN
Beef demand has been a pleasant surprise so far this year. Wholesale and retail beef prices have increased fast enough to maintain decent margins for beef packers and allow feedlots profitability for the first three quarters of the year.

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Friday, May 9,2014

Climate change stressing soil: more efforts needed

by Chris Clayton - DTN
Soil conservation practices will become more critical as weather volatility increases with higher temperatures and rising atmospheric carbon-dioxide levels, said one of the lead authors of the agriculture chapter in the National Climate Assessment released last Tuesday.

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Friday, March 7,2014

States take crack at California egg law

by Chris Clayton - DTN
The six states are suing the attorney general and agriculture secretary of California, arguing the Golden State is violating the Commerce Clause of the Constitution with a state statute imposing hen layer space requirements for all eggs sold in California.

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Friday, January 31,2014

Agency must clarify normal on-farm grain handling activities

by Chris Clayton - DTN
A top administrator with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration held a press call Wednesday to clear up some confusion on OSHA’s farm exemption. Following new commands from Congress last week, OSHA also is now consulting with USDA on ways farmers handle grain after harvest.

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Friday, January 10,2014

OSHA goes against the grain; inspections and fining farms draws the ire of senators

by Chris Clayton - DTN
Sen. Mike Johanns (R- NE) is drawing attention to OSHA’s move to regulate on-farm grain bins. Saying, “Grain bins and family farms go together like the State Fair and 4-H,” Johanns became incredulous in mid-December over a potential $132,000 fine hanging over a Nebraska farm operation because of an OSHA inspection.

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Friday, November 22,2013

WRDA conference talks begin

by Chris Clayton - DTN
The House and Senate began conference talks last Wednesday to reauthorize the Water Resources Development Act. The bill provides authorization for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to build, upgrade or repair sea ports, locks and dams in major rivers, wetland projects and other major water infrastructure needs.

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Friday, November 15,2013

Prepare for tougher times

by Chris Clayton - DTN
Farmers currently don’t expect lower prices to be the trend. A farm survey in March asked farmers what they expect for corn prices over the next five years. Most farmers expected the average cash price to be slightly higher than $5 per bushel. Producers saw a 10 percent chance of $7 corn.

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Friday, October 25,2013

Water bill passes House easily

by Chris Clayton - DTN
The Water Resources Development Act, or WRDA, tells the Army Corps of Engineers how to spend its money on mandatory programs. Over the past decade, the Corps has spent an average of $5 billion annually on waterway construction projects based on WRDA authorization.

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Friday, October 18,2013

Laureates stress biotechnology

by Chris Clayton - DTN
The World Food Prize, which touts itself as the Nobel Prize of agriculture, is honoring work in biotechnology with a three-person award this year to Robb Fraley, executive vice president for Monsanto Co.

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