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CSP zeroed out in House Farm Bill

The Conservation Stewardship Program provides a 4 to 1 return on investment. The House version of the farm bill would eliminate the program.Eliminating a USDA program that helps farmers increase yields while protecting the environment would cost taxpayers billions of dollars in economic and ecological benefits, according to a study by conservation-minded scientists.  The Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP), which currently helps U.S. landowners manage 72 million acres of agricultural land, is zeroed out in the House version of the farm bill.

UK to replace EU farm subsidies with 7-year transition scheme

The UK government plans to introduce a seven-year transition period for farmers’ funding from 2021, during which direct payments from the state will be reduced and tied more closely to delivering environmental and other “public” goods. The Environmental Land Management scheme will replace EU basic farm payments, which are based on the amount of land farmed, under which farmers who provide the greatest environmental benefit will receive the largest amount of public money.

FDA Announces Fees for the Accredited Third-Party Certification Program

The Food and Drug Administration is announcing the user fees for Fiscal Year 2019 for accreditation bodies seeking recognition, as well as annual fees for recognized accreditation bodies and accredited certification bodies participating in the Accredited Third-Party Certification Program.

Tariffs will cost U.S. dairy farmers $1.5B this year

A study by Informa Economics found retaliatory tariffs by China and Mexico will reduce U.S. dairy farmer revenue by $1.5 billion in 2018 and $3 billion in 2019 if they remain in place.While U.S. dairy producers appreciate USDA’s plan to purchase dairy products and increase funding to develop foreign markets in its tariff-mitigation strategy, they say the agency’s plan to distribute $127 million in direct payments to dairy producers falls far short of what’s needed.

Economists say ERS move penny-wise, dollar-foolish

The American Statistical Association and 41 other economic institutes have issued a statement saying USDA’s decision to move the Economic Research Service out of Washington, DC, will drive a brain drain from a vital research component in the nation's $1 trillion food, agriculture, and rural economy.

USDA, FDA to hold joint meeting on cell culture technology

The topic of cell culture technology and the products produced from it is a controversial one throughout the industry as well as in Washington. US Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue and US Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb on Sept. 10 announced a joint public meeting Oct. 23-24 to focus on the potential hazards, oversight considerations, and labeling of cell cultured food products derived from livestock and poultry. The public meeting will be held on Oct. 23 from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Oct. 24 from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Detention of Migrant Children Has Skyrocketed to Highest Levels Ever

Even though hundreds of children separated from their families after crossing the border have been released under court order, the overall number of detained migrant children has exploded to the highest ever recorded — a significant counternarrative to the Trump administration’s efforts to reduce the number of undocumented families coming to the United States.Population levels at federally contracted shelters for migrant children have quietly shot up more than fivefold since last summer, according to data obtained by The New York Times, reaching a total of 12,800 this month.

How did the USDA determine trade damage estimate calculations?

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today released a detailed accounting of how the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) calculated estimated damage from trade disruptions. USDA’s Office of the Chief Economist developed an estimate of gross trade damages for commodities with assessed retaliatory tariffs by Canada, China, the European Union, Mexico, and Turkey to set commodity payment rates and purchase levels in the trade mitigation package announced by USDA.

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