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CoBank: Loose ends remain in USMCA

Negotiators for the United States and Canada continue work on finishing touches of the US-Mexico-Canada trade agreement following a hard Sept. 30 deadline that spurred down-to-the-wire talks on a rewrite of the North American Free Trade Agreement acceptable to both countries, CoBank’s Knowledge Exchange Division said in an analysis of the USMCA. The USMCA provides the US agriculture sector a level of certainty, improvements in market access for some ag-related products and momentum heading into trade talks with China, according to the report.

Which US communities are most affected by Chinese, EU, and NAFTA retaliatory tariffs?

The United States’ three largest trading partners—China, the European Union (EU), and NAFTA (Canada and Mexico)—have implemented tariffs on over $120 billion of U.S. exports.This short analysis reviews the exposure local communities have to these trade policy changes. It draws on the Export Monitor, a unique dataset developed as part of the Global Cities Initiative, to estimate which local and regional economies rely the most on export industries targeted by retaliatory tariffs.

Disqualified from SNAP? SAM I Am!

Owners of retail food stores permanently disqualified from participation in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) are saddled with serious consequences in addition to the loss of the store’s ability to accept food stamp benefits (EBT). After USDA’s Food & Nutrition Service (FNS) permanently disqualifies a store, the agency promptly searches its SNAP retailer database to determine if the disqualified store’s shareholders have ownership interests in other SNAP-authorized stores.

Make Your Voice Heard: Uphold the Integrity of Milk!

As a branch of the American Dairy Coalition (ADC), the Protecting Milk Integrity Initiative works to advocate for the proper use of federally standardized terms established for the word “milk” on product labels. In an effort to provide clarity and consistency for consumers across the nation, ADC is urging the FDA to stop allowing the wrongful use of the word “milk” in branding on non-milk, plant-based alternative products. It is time to end this confusion and protect the nutritious, wholesome and pure reputation of milk that is confirmed in the current FDA Standard of Identity.

From the front lines of NAFTA, more relief than rejoicing

Doyle Lentz, a farmer in North Dakota whose crops include wheat and barley, talked about similar concerns, even though he does see a particular benefit for wheat farmers in the new deal.American farmers had been frustrated by Canada's policy of classifying all U.S. wheat as low-quality (and therefore low-price). The new deal prohibits that low-quality classification, essentially allowing U.S. farmers to sell more wheat to Canada at fairer prices. That's good news, Lentz says.

The Farm Bill Stalemate, Part 2: The SNAP Question

The September 30th expiration date for the Agricultural Act of 2014 has passed and conference negotiations appear no closer to completion; a period of uncertainty likely to last through at least a lame-duck session after the November elections.  Part 1 of this series on the farm bill stalemate reviewed the economic situation for the major supported commodities, as well as the level of assistance they are likely to receive for the 2018 crop.  In Part 2, we explore the issues concerning the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and how they are contributing to the stalemate.  The i

Court denies USDA motion to dismiss organic lawsuit

A ruling by the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia will allow a lawsuit by the Organic Trade Association against USDA over its withdrawal of the Organic Livestock and Poultry Practices rule to proceed. U.S. District Judge Rosemary M.

Hemp, on the Brink of Being Legal, Still Faces Challenges

It’s a giddy time for the U.S. hemp industry. Farmers are planting more acres. Businesses are selling more products. And with Congress on the brink of fully legalizing hemp, industry insiders are eagerly anticipating a boom. But even if the legalization provisions in the 2018 farm bill pass, hemp will remain a tightly regulated crop facing plenty of regulatory and legal challenges.

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