In a move hailed by some ag organizations, the U.S. Senate Energy & Natural Resources Committee passed a measure entitled the Grazing Improvement Act sponsored by Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY) in late November, 2013.
“We’ve seen a terrific grassroots response on behalf of our growers and our state affiliates, who have pulled out all the stops to make sure the farmer voice is heard loud and clear,” said National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) President Martin Barbre, an Illinois corn grower.
More than 90 percent of California is experiencing severe drought conditions. Last year, dozens of cities in California set new records for lowest levels of precipitation; Occidential, Big Sur and Crescent all recorded rain totals 30 to 40 inches below average, according to National Weather Service statistics.
On Jan. 9, the United States Senate passed the Veterinary Medicine Mobility Act (S. 1171), sponsored by Senator Jerry Moran (R-KS). The bill was passed unanimously without amendment and has been sent to the House of Representatives where it awaits further action.
Food and Drug Administration (FDA) makes a determination that meat from American horses can be made safe to enter the food supply. The FDA regulates which drugs are safe in meat animals, as well as their withdrawal times. The FDA currently categorizes horses as companion (non-food) animals.
New data from November of 2013 indicate that 86 percent of corn, soybean and cotton growers in the South have herbicide-resistant or hard-to-control weeds on their farms. The number of farmers impacted by tough weeds in the Midwest has climbed as well, and now tops 61 percent.
Celebrations of ESA’s 40 year milestone were minimal, in part because of the continued controversy over a flawed law. Intended to conserve species and habitat, ESA has recovered less that 2 percent of the approximately 2,100 species listed as endangered or threatened since its 1973 inception.
Records are being broken all over the state, according to the National Weather Service. San Jose has only received 3.8 inches since last January, well short of its 14-inch average. Oakland is even drier—3.39 inches this year, compared with its 22.8-inch average.
“Reducing nutrients from farm runoff costs almost 60 percent less than the same reduction from a sewage treatment plant,” said McElwaine. “We should be rewarding farmers who voluntarily put conservation plans in place. Instead we’re going to charge them.
“A one-size-fits-all approach to school lunch left students hungry and school districts frustrated with the additional expense, paperwork and nutritional research necessary to meet federal requirements. These are exactly the changes included in our Sensible School Lunch Act,” Hoeven said.