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Pennsylvania Agriculture Affected by Changes to State Tax Code

On July 13, 2016, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf signed into law Act 84 which amends the Pennsylvania Tax Reform Code of 1971 and includes three changes relevant to agriculture. First, Act 84 amends the inheritance tax exemption available to family farms engaged in the business of agriculture. Previously, if certain conditions were met, Pennsylvania exempted from state inheritance tax the "transfer of real estate devoted to the business of agriculture between members of the same family" (emphasis added).

Wisconsin DNR reviews farm regulations

The Department of Natural Resources took the first steps in a state rule-making process aimed at safeguarding manure-spreading practices in areas prone to water contamination.  But environmental groups pushed for a faster response by the agency and complained the measure was weakened from an initial draft under pressure from farm groups. DNR officials initially took a stronger measure to Gov. Scott Walker for approval. But after objections by farm groups, the agency re-worked the regulations and removed some specific requirements for the state’s largest farms.

U.S. Protein Producers Seeing Record Growth in Demand, But Prices Predicted to Fall, Rabobank Says

U.S. protein producers are currently seeing record growth in demand; however, prices over the next couple years are predicted to fall. These findings are part of “Chickens, Cows, and Pigs… Oh My!  Implications of Record U.S. Protein Expansion,” a new report from the Rabobank Food & Agribusiness Research and Advisory group, that explores the impact of growth on the future of the market.  Production of protein in the United States is projected to grow at a rate of 2.5-percent annually.

British farmers prepare for end to direct subsidies after Brexit

The future of farming after Britian leaves the EU is likely to see an end to direct subsidies to farmers, many of whom are calling instead for measures to support a profitable market. Farmers receive 2.1 Bn pounds in direct subsidies and 600 M pounds in rural development payments through the Eu's Common Agricultural Policy. 

Opinion: The Freedom of Not Having to Farm

U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack recently said: “Every one of us that’s not a farmer is not a farmer because we have farmers.”  That’s a lot of “farmer” in one sentence. And the powerful statement makes sense.  There aren’t many farmers among us. Less than two percent, as a matter of fact. Even more telling, 85 percent of what’s grown in our country is produced by less than one-tenth of one percent of our population.  Vilsack is right. We delegate the responsibility of feeding our families to a small percentage of this country.

Antibiotic Resistance: A Human Health Perspective

The last century saw history’s most dramatic improvements in medical care and health, fueled to a great degree by the development and widespread use of antibiotics. However, in the conflict between bacterial evolution and human ingenuity, many reports suggest that in this century, the bacteria seem to have gained the advantage. Maintaining our dominance over bacterial infections will require more than just the application of scientific advances in fields like microbiology, bacterial and human genomics, biochemistry and information technology.

U of M plans new investment in ag research, education and Extension

A nearly $5 million state investment in agricultural productivity at the University of Minnesota will be used this year to hire scientists and improve infrastructure across seven areas of collaboration spanning three U of M colleges and at research and outreach and Extension sites across the state.  The plan announced today covers the first years of a multi-year investment known as the Agricultural Research, Education, Extension and Technology Transfer Program.

The city’s last milk plant, closing after nearly 100 years in business

After nearly 100 years in business, the iconic Queens, New York dairy that provided milk cartons to New York City schools is closing up shop.  The owners of Elmhurst Dairy announced that the last remaining milk processing plant in the five boroughs will close at the end of October.  It currently employs 273 workers.  “My family was dedicated to trying to keep the plant open long past the years that it was economically viable because it was the wishes of its founder, Max Schwartz, that future generations of the family continue the business,” said Elmhurst Dairy CEO Henry Schwartz.  The famil


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