Public Meetings, Congressional Hearings, Calls for Comments

FOOD & AGRICULTURE

  • The sale of antibiotics for livestock increased 16 percent from 2009 to 2012 in a trend that has troubling implications for resistance in humans, according to the FDA. Read More
  • Never mind the battle for governor or the struggle by Democrats to regain their veto-proof majority in the State Legislature. The most contested fight in California this fall may well be here on San Francisco Bay, pitting every elected official from Berkeley against the soft drink industry. Read More
  • Voters in Colorado and Oregon will decide this fall whether or not they want labels on foods containing genetically modified ingredients. The ballot measures this fall highlight a much larger national conversation about requiring labels on genetically modified foods.Read More
  • The EPA has posted a notice to its website announcing it has taken action to improve and streamline the pathway petition process under the renewable fuels standard (RFS). Read More
  • USDA, staff with the Senate Agriculture Committee and the office of U.S. Senator Thad Cochran, R-Miss., will be available at two listening sessions at which agriculture producers in Mississippi can provide input and ask questions about new programs authorized in the Agricultural Act of 2014. Read more
  • DuPont and Procter & Gamble announced on Monday that cellulosic ethanol, rather than corn-based ethanol, will be used in a commercial-scale laundry detergent for the first time. Read More
  • Cargill Inc. is working to prevent the return of a disease that has killed about 8 million U.S. pigs in a little over a year, or to minimize its effect as winter approaches.Read More
  • New data from the USDA's Economic Research Service attempt to put a price on the cost of major foodborne illnesses in the United States. Read more
  • Business volume for the nation's farmer, rancher and fishery cooperatives set a sales record for a third straight year as it surpassed $246 billion in 2013, a gain of $8 billion, or 4%, from the previous record set in 2012, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack said Sept. 30. Read More 
  • Oklahoma wheat farmers are calling on USDA to roll out a policy they say would help ease the pain of several years of drought. A part of the 2014 Farm Bill, the new policy would keep farmers from losing crop insurance coverage when their crops are lost to drought. Read More
  • Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced a $91 million loan guarantee to help finance an innovative advanced biofuel plant in Rapides Parish, Louisiana. Read More
  • The USDA's Risk Management Agency announced that a premium subsidy has been established to offer more affordable protection to eligible diversified farm operations, as part of the new Whole-Farm Revenue Protection insurance policy. Read More
  • Agriculture Deputy Secretary Krysta Harden announced that the USDA will improve farm loans by expanding eligibility and increasing lending limits to help more beginning and family farmers. Read More
  • Secretary of State John Kerry and Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack launched the Global Alliance for Climate-Smart Agriculture on Wednesday to promote greater international engagement on ways agriculture can help reduce the impact of climate change. Read More
  • Louisiana agricultural officials have asked the federal government to loosen restrictions on the use of pilotless aerial vehicles. Read More
  • The ghost of the Southwest's mega-drought continues to haunt growers even after a few rain showers this last growing season. Producers there have been used to paying dearly for each dollar of crop insurance coverage, but the cost-benefit ratio could reach a breaking point in 2015. Read More
  • All year, food prices have gone up in Arizona, but a report shows prices are holding steady this fall. According to the Arizona Farm Bureau's quarterly report, Arizona residents will be seeing increases on products like lettuce and orange juice because of California's drought. However, protein prices are slightly on the decline. Read More
  • Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that the USDA has released a comprehensive report synthesizing current literature that explores opportunities in the emerging bioeconomy. Read More
  • In early September Senator Jon Tester (D-Mont.) reached out to Senator Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) to draft a bipartisan letter to demonstrate the U.S. Senate's resolve to defend the nation's 2002 country of origin labeling (COOL) law. Read More
  • California Drought Leading To Better Quality Wine Grapes. Read More
  • Tech-savvy, avant-garde Millennials who continue to be the focus of restaurant marketers are said to be looking for food and drinks that harken back to an imagined simpler time. Read More
  • With restaurants continuing to add hamburgers to their menus, chefs across all segments are trying to give the sandwich a differentiating kick with spicy ingredients, such as chipotle, jalapeno, pepper Jack cheese and sometimes all of the above. Read More
  • U.S. Rep. Mike Conaway said he would pitch a review of the country's Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or food stamps, before Republican leaders in his effort to win appointment to chairmanship of the House Committee on Agriculture in January. Read More

TRADE & INTERNATIONAL AGRICULTURE NEWS

  • Officials from the United States and the European Union say they have made progress as they seek to sweep away trade barriers. Read More 
  • Thailand plans to reduce production of rice and rubber in order to contain likelihood of oversupply of the country's major farm goods in domestic and world markets. Read More
  • CME Group Inc., the world's largest futures marketplace, said it will cut trading in its livestock markets to as few as six hours a day on Fridays, from the current schedule of 23 hours on most days. The change is scheduled to take effect later this month, pending approval by the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission, CME said in a statement. Read More
  • Even with a grain harvest falling below last year's record, Western Canadian farmers can't find enough rail cars in the right places to move their crops. Read More
  • As Europe and the United States pursue a lofty vision of a free trade pact that removes tariffs and eases regulatory burdens, it's not just disputes over automobile safety and digital privacy that are creating tensions. Read More
  • Wealthy countries are still subsidizing their farmers at the expense of developing nations, undermining market access for some of the world's poorest producers, two farm ministers told a Food and Agriculture Organization meeting on Monday. Read More
  • U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman Touts Texas as National Model For American Exporting, Promotes Historic U.S. Trade Agenda with Members of Congress. Read more
  • B.C.'s pork industry fears a deadly virus that affects baby pigs could make its way into the province from the East. Read More
  • Aeon to Start Growing Rice as Companies Replace Farmers: Japan's largest supermarket chain that sells everything from fresh food to bicycles across 424 stores, plans to become the nation's largest rice grower. Read More
  • Soybeans, Corn Rebound as U.S. Exports Gain Read More
  • The European Union decided on Thursday to make public its negotiating mandate for a free trade deal with the United States in a bid to quell growing opposition to the proposed accord. Read More
  • Soybean output in top exporter Brazil is poised to reach a record high as farmers expand planting over other crops, the government forecaster said. Read More
  • More than 100 people across New Zealand are sick from Yersinia pseudotuberculosis, and at least 35 people have been hospitalized. Read more
  • Over the summer, more than 100 members of Congress called for repeal of country-of-origin labeling (COOL) if the World Trade Organization (WTO) ruled against the U.S. in its trade dispute with Canada and Mexico. Read more

WHITE HOUSE

CONGRESS 

POLITICS

BUDGET, ECONOMY & FINANCE

FOREIGN AFFAIRS & DEFENSE

HEALTH CARE

  • Dallas Ebola patient Thomas Eric Duncan, the first diagnosed with the virus in the U.S., passed away Wednesday morning, as officials continue to monitor 48 people who had contact with him during what is a critical week in determining whether others were infected before he was hospitalized.
  • While the experience of shopping for health coverage on the federal Affordable Care Act enrollment site won't be perfect during the second enrollment period, HealthCare.gov CEO Kevin Counihan said it is "night and day from last year."
  • A nurse in Madrid was diagnosed with Ebola after treating a priest who died of the virus last month. The new infection has sparked an official investigation of potential failures in preventive measures.

MEETINGS 

October 21-23, 2014
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE 
Office of the Secretary Meeting Notice of the National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board 
SUMMARY: In accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, 5 U.S.C. App 2, Section 1408 of the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977, and the Agricultural Act of 2014, the USDA announces an open meeting of the National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics (NAREEE) Advisory Board.  
Link: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-10-06/html/2014-23814.htm 

FOOD SAFETY

November 10, 2014
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE  
Importation of Fresh Bananas From the Philippines Into Hawaii and U.S. Territories  
SUMMARY: We are amending the regulations concerning the importation of fruits and vegetables to allow the importation of fresh bananas from the Philippines into Guam, Hawaii, and the Northern Mariana Islands. 
Link: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-10-10/html/2014-24246.htm 

MARKETING

December 5, 2014
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE  
Irish Potatoes Grown in Colorado and Imported Irish Potatoes; Relaxation of the Handling Regulation for Area No. 2 and Import Regulations  
SUMMARY: This proposed rule invites comments on a revision to the minimum quantity exception for potatoes handled under the Colorado potato marketing order, Area No. 2 (order). 
Link: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-10-06/html/2014-23524.htm 

December 8, 2014
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE   
Notice of Request for Extension and Revision of a Currently Approved Information Collection for the Dairy Product Mandatory Reporting Program  
SUMMARY: In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35), this notice announces the Agricultural Marketing Service's (AMS) intention to request an extension and revision of a currently approved information collection under the Dairy Product Mandatory Reporting Program. 
Link: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-10-08/html/2014-24012.htm 

OTHER ITEMS

October 6, 2014
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE  
Freshwater Crawfish Tail Meat From the People's Republic of China: Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review and New Shipper Review; 2012-2013
SUMMARY: The Department of Commerce is conducting an administrative review and new shipper review of the antidumping duty order on freshwater crawfish tail meat from the People's Republic of China (PRC). 
Link: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-10-06/html/2014-23793.htm 

October 7, 2014
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
Certain Frozen Fish Fillets From the Socialist Republic of Vietnam: Final Results of Expedited Second Sunset Review of the Antidumping Duty Order  
SUMMARY: As a result of this second sunset review, the Department of Commerce finds that revocation of the antidumping duty order on certain frozen fish fillets from the Socialist Republic of Vietnam would be likely to lead to continuation or recurrence of dumping at the levels indicated in the "Final Results of Review'' section of this notice. 
Link: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-10-07/html/2014-23962.htm 

October 10, 2014
DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE  
Certain Frozen Warmwater Shrimp From India: Initiation and Preliminary Results of Antidumping Duty Changed Circumstances Review  
SUMMARY: In response to a request by Premier Marine Products Private Limited (PPL), a producer/exporter of certain frozen warmwater shrimp (shrimp) from India, and pursuant to section 751(b) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the Act), 19 CFR 351.216 and 351.221(c)(3)(ii), the Department of Commerce (the Department) is initiating a changed circumstances review (CCR) of the antidumping duty (AD) order on shrimp from India with regards to PPL. 
Link: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-10-10/html/2014-24277.htm 

November 6, 2014
INTERNATIONAL TRADE COMMISSION  
Recent Trends in U.S. Services Trade, 2015 Annual Report 
SUMMARY: The Commission has prepared and published annual reports in this series under investigation No. 332-345, Recent Trends in U.S. Services Trade, since 1996. 
Link: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-10-06/html/2014-23753.htm 

November 7, 2014
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE  
SUMMARY: The Farm Service Agency will conduct pilot projects of limited scope and duration to evaluate processes and techniques that may improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the Farm Loan Programs (FLP) real estate loans (also referred to as "farm ownership loans''), operating loans, emergency loans, and administrative provisions, as required by the Agricultural Act of 2014 (the 2014 Farm Bill). 
Link: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-10-08/html/2014-24050.htm 

December 5, 2014
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE 
Food and Nutrition Service Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection, Comment Request: Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children Infant and Toddler Feeding Practices Study  
SUMMARY: In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice invites the public and other public agencies to comment on this proposed information collection. 
Link: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-10-06/html/2014-23740.htm 

December 9, 2014
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE  
Announcement of Requirements and Registration for the U.S. Tall Wood Building Prize Competition  
SUMMARY: The USDA is in a cooperative partnership with the Softwood Lumber Board and the Binational Softwood Lumber Council is conducting a prize competition funding initiative to support the demonstration of tall wood buildings in the United States.  
Link: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-10-10/html/2014-24198.htm 

Call for Comments

IFT calls for comments on the 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans.  For details please refer to http://www.ift.org/public-policy-and-regulations/advocacy/ift-comments/call-for-comments.aspx.