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40 Ag groups oppose beef merger

December 31, 2012 --

 

By National Farmers Union

(NFU) and more than 40 farming, rural and agricultural organizations sent a letter to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ)asking for an expanded investigation into a proposal made by food processing company JBS USA to acquire two U.S.-based beef packing plants owned by Canadian-based XL Four Star Beef.

“We firmly believe that this proposed merger would reduce competition and seriously harm both cattle producers and consumers,” the letter states. “We therefore request that no early termination of the antitrust evaluation regarding the acquisition of the two U.S.-based beef packing plants be granted and that the Justice Department make a second request for information to extend the investigation.”
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Ranchers respond to Animal Disease Traceability Rule

December 30, 2012 --

NCBA Statement on Animal Disease Traceability Rule
National Cattlemen’s Beef Association
National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) Chief Veterinarian Kathy Simmons issued the following statement regarding the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) final animal disease traceability (ADT) rule, which was announced by Secretary Vilsack this afternoon.

“NCBA has been an industry leader in working diligently with USDA APHIS to ensure cattlemen’s concerns are addressed in this new animal disease traceability program. We are encouraged by today’s comments from Secretary Vilsack, and we are in the process of thoroughly reviewing the rule and sharing this information with our members.

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States adopt sturgeon season above Bonneville

December 29, 2012 --

 

fish-wildlife-US-logoCommercial Dungeness crab season delayed
Oregon Dept. of Fish & Wildlife

 

Bonneville Pool sturgeon anglers will again see a split season for white sturgeon on the Columbia River in 2013. Fisheries managers from Oregon and Washington this week approved a white sturgeon retention season in Bonneville Pool consisting of winter and summer periods. The winter retention period will take place from Jan. 1 through Feb. 10, or until a harvest guideline of approximately 1,150 fish is achieved. The summer season is expected to begin in mid-June to harvest the balance of the 2,000 fish harvest guideline.

In The Dalles and John Day Pools, white sturgeon retention will open Jan. 1 and continue seven days per week until harvest guidelines are achieved as follows: The Dalles Pool – 300 fish; John Day Pool – 500 fish.

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Statement on EPA resignation

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Renewable Fuels Association

Statement by Bob Dinneen, President and CEO of the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), on the announced resignation of EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson:

“Administrator Jackson put into action the Obama Administration’s commitment to ethanol and other biofuels. During her tenure, she cleared the way for E15 giving consumers more choice and savings at the gas pump and she protected the progress that has been made in reducing our dependence of foreign oil by recognizing the importance and inherent flexibility of the RFS. The ethanol industry thanks her for her service and looks forward to working with her successor to continue the growth of America’s domestic renewable fuels industry.”

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Farmers Union opposes Farm Bill Extension

December 28, 2012 --

By National Farmers Union

National Farmers Union (NFU) President Roger Johnson issued the following statement after the NFU Board of Directors passed a resolution today opposing an extension of the 2008 Farm Bill, which expired on Sept. 30, in lieu of passage of a new five-year farm bill. The vote by the Board was passed without objection:

“The clock is ticking and we are quickly going into the final hour of this lame duck session with rural America’s future hanging in the balance.

“Any short-term extension of the farm bill would only cause a litany of problems that will not be easily fixed when a new farm bill eventually is signed into law.

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OSU tests quinoa rice as NW crop for global demand

December 27, 2012 --
qinarice
— Quinoa has higher amounts of calcium, iron, fiber and vitamin B than rice, wheat and barley. (Photo by Daniel Robison.)
By University of Oregon Extension Office

Researchers from Oregon State University are exploring the potential for quinoa to grow in the Northwest’s diverse climates.

Preliminary experiments have shown that some varieties of quinoa, harvested for its tiny grain-like seeds, can be cultivated in Oregon. To expand on those findings, OSU is a partner on a four-year, $1.6 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Growing demand for quinoa worldwide has more than doubled its price in the past decade – possibly creating an economic opportunity for Northwest farmers, according to Steve Petrie, one of the researchers on the project and the director of OSU’s Columbia Basin Agricultural Research Center.

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Labor Sec. refuses Walden request on crop seizure controversy

December 26, 2012 --

Walden-gregGreg Walden continues to press Labor Secretary for answers on “hot goods” orders
After 122 days, Labor Department still has not answered letter from Oregon Congressional delegation
By Oregon Congressman Greg Walden

U.S. Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.) again called on Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis to answer a bipartisan letter from six members of the Oregon Congressional delegation requesting answers on reports of heavy-handed enforcement practices by the Labor Department.

“One hundred and twenty two days ago, nearly every member of the Oregon delegation—Republicans and Democrats—wrote to the Labor Secretary after hearing reports of so-called ‘hot goods’ enforcement tactics that stopped shipments of highly-perishable berries with little opportunity for appeal,” Rep. Walden said in a speech on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives.

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Farm Photo of the Year 2012

December 25, 2012 --

Merry Christmas from Natural Resource Report.

We leave you with one of the Farm Bureau photos of the year in their annual contest.

fxrm-pxc

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Animal Rights Extremists Still Active

December 24, 2012 --

farm-bureua-usaAnimal Rights Extremists Still Active
By Stewart Truelsen
American Farm Bureau

The animal rights movement often is nonsensical like when female activists disrobe in public to protest the wearing of animal fur, or People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals files a lawsuit against SeaWorld for enslaving whales.

The SeaWorld lawsuit was dismissed by a judge because whales already have protection under the law. Marine parks are governed by the Marine Mammals Protection Act which allows public display only if permits are obtained and performances are educational.

The silly side of the animal rights movement grabs headlines now and then and makes it on the evening news and YouTube, but there is a more sinister side to the movement that uses arson and sabotage to make its point.

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FDA: Farms Don’t Need to Register Under Food Safety Law

December 23, 2012 --

By National Association of Wheat Growers

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reiterated that farms do not have to register with the agency under a 2011 food safety law.

The clarification was included in updated guidance and question-and-answer documents about registration requirements for smaller food facilities. FDA said the documents are intended to provide easier-to-read information for entities that might need to comply, or that might not know if they need to comply, with changes made to food safety law under the Food Safety Modernization Act of 2011.

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