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Nutria out of control in California

Last week, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife said wardens had found more than 20 "nutria" in wetlands, rivers and canals and in Merced, Fresno and Stanislaus counties. Wardens were trying to figure out how to eradicate the rodents, which are as big as small dogs and breed as fast as rabbits. If they take hold, wardens said, nutria could wreak a lot of havoc. "They burrow in dikes and levees and roadbeds so they weaken infrastructure.

Six Tennessee ag businesses awarded grants from state

The Tennessee Dept. of Agriculture has recognized the first round of recipients of grants aimed at supporting rural agricultural programs in the Volunteer State. The grants from the Agricultural Enterprise Fund (AEF) are part of a plan to facilitate job creation, economic development and agricultural development in rural Tennessee, the agency said in a news release.

The Home Farm Comes Inside

Don Beland is converting his five-bedroom suburban home in Holly Springs, N.C., into a farm— indoors. In the kitchen he has set up shelves that hold 12 trays of tomato seedlings, arugula, spinach and microgreens. In about two weeks, the tomato plants will move into the dining room, where Mr. Beland will replant them into a 7-foot high soilless growing system he is building. Near a window, jalapeño and habanero pepper seeds germinate in a 3-foot wide miniature greenhouse.The house is typically aglow with purple LED lights that can be seen from the street.

‘Canada does not treat us right,’ Trump complains on trade, the border

“We lose a lot of money with Canada. Canada does not treat us right in terms of the farming and the crossing the borders,” he said at a White House event on his new infrastructure proposal. “So they’ll either treat us right or we’ll just have to do business a little bit diff… really differently,” he said. “We cannot continue to be taken advantage of by other countries.” The Canadian government has disputed Trump’s frequent claim that the U.S. “loses” money on trade with Canada.

American Soybean Association hires CEO to replace Steve Censky

The American Soybean Association announced February 12 the selection of Ryan Findlay as its new CEO.  Findlay replaces Stephen Censky, who left ASA in October of 2017 after confirmation by the U.S. Senate as Deputy Secretary of Agriculture. Findlay is a native of Caro, Michigan, where his family still farms row crops.  He earned a degree in political science from Western Michigan University and an MBA from Northwood University in Midland, Michigan. The last four years Ryan worked for the global agricultural company Syngenta, focusing on freedom-to-operate issues impacting farmers.

Britain worries about antibiotics in US inports

Livestock raised for food in the US are dosed with five times as much antibiotic medicine as farm animals in the UK, new data has shown, raising questions about rules on meat imports under post-Brexit trade deals. The difference in rates of dosage rises to at least nine times as much in the case of cattle raised for beef, and may be as high as 16 times the rate of dosage per cow in the UK. There is currently a ban on imports of American beef throughout Europe, owing mainly to the free use of growth hormones in the US.

Idaho: Trespass bill backed by Idaho farm groups sent to House floor

A bill supported by dozens of Idaho farm groups and aimed at deterring trespassing on private property has been sent to the House floor with a “do-pass” recommendation. Dozens of people testified on House Bill 536 before the House Agricultural Affairs Committee, including many farmers and ranchers who recounted numerous examples of damage done to their crops and equipment by trespassers. “We have had corrals burnt for firewood, fences cut, crops destroyed, water tanks shot up, livestock chased and shot and calves run over,” said Rep.

Despite tweaks, dairy insurance program not saving Wisconsin farmers

Western Wisconsin dairy farmers praised tweaks to a price insurance program Monday but told U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin they face much larger problems, primarily too much milk. Baldwin, D-Wis., met with farmers to talk about legislative tweaks to the program, which was introduced in the 2014 Farm Bill.Known as the Margin Protection Program for Dairy, the MPP allows farmers to purchase insurance that pays out when the cost to produce milk gets too close to their selling price.

Arkansas judge tosses out Monsanto dicamba suit

An Arkansas judge on Friday dismissed a lawsuit filed by Monsanto seeking to block the state's plan to ban the warm-weather use of the herbicide dicamba. Monsanto and the Arkansas Plant Board have been engaged in a monthslong fight over the use of the herbicide in the state. The plant board — which is made up of farmers, agricultural business representatives, pesticide officials and weed scientists — voted last year to prohibit the use of the herbicide from April 16 through Oct.

MD:Lawmakers propose study to begin tracking air pollution from Maryland chicken farms

Maryland lawmakers are weighing a study of whether huge chicken farms are polluting the air around them — a new front in an ongoing debate over how the state’s expansive poultry industry affects the environment. The proposal is stirring conflicts pitting economic development against public health, and scientific research versus political activism. The poultry industry dominates state agriculture, and its representatives say farms have had to grow in response to the rising costs of complying with environmental regulation and animal welfare concerns.


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