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Canadian beef checkoff assessment to more than double

Canadian cattle producers will pay more than double their current national beef checkoff assessment by the end of 2018. The new figure will be C$2.50 per animal sold, up from the C$1.00 in place since 2002, to fund research and marketing of beef.The increase in assessment was part of a national beef strategy industry leaders issued in 2014 to help boost Canadian beef sales globally.

Trump's coal job push stumbles in most states - data

President Donald Trump’s effort to put coal miners back to work stumbled in most coal producing states last year, even as overall employment in the downtrodden sector grew modestly, according to preliminary government data obtained by Reuters.  The effort has had little impact on domestic demand for coal so far, with U.S. utilities still shutting coal-fired power plants and shifting to cheaper natural gas - moving toward a lower carbon future despite the direction the White House is plotting under Trump.

Agriculture Enters Age Of Civil Suits

Welcome to farming’s litigious age. When physical injury occurs in agriculture, the loss often leads directly to a courtroom. While producer eyes are quick to focus on the fine print and penalties of OSHA regulations, sledgehammer civil suits approach from the blind side, capable of swallowing an operation whole. Mirroring the U.S. mainstream, agriculture has entered an era of litigation and legal wrangling. Lawsuits against farmers once were a rarity. Yet, today’s producer is often popularly perceived as a wealthy, land-rich businessman with substantial assets.

Livestock air emissions deadline looms

A spokesperson for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association says the U.S. Coastguard national response center could crash when the livestock industry files air emissions reports later this month. Chief environmental counsel Scott Yager tells Brownfield more than 200,000 livestock producers will have 24-hours to call the Coastguard on January 22, to meet a new air emissions requirement.

USDA Announces Proposed Rule to Modernize Swine Inspection

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) today announced its continued effort to modernize inspection systems through science-based approaches to food safety. USDA is proposing to amend the federal meat inspection regulations to establish a new voluntary inspection system for market hog slaughter establishments called the New Swine Slaughter Inspection System (NSIS), while also requiring additional pathogen sampling for all swine slaughter establishments.

Dicamba Cases May Be Centralized

Attorneys representing farmers from across the country who filed multiple lawsuits alleging off-target dicamba damage to their crops will try to convince a federal panel of judges next week that the cases should be heard in a single court. The seven-judge U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation is slated to hear oral arguments on Jan. 25 in Miami, Florida, on a motion by attorneys representing farmers in Arkansas, Illinois, Kansas and Missouri to move all the cases to one court.The question at hand will be what venue would best serve the interests of all the litigants.

Poultry Company to Pay for Well Drilling Amid Water Concerns

An executive with the poultry processing company in Delaware that's been cited for spraying wastewater with excessive nitrate levels onto nearby fields says Mountaire Farms is willing to pay for drilling deep wells for concerned property owners.

Gene edited crops should be exempted from GM food laws, says EU lawyer

Gene editing technologies should be largely exempted from EU laws on GM food, although individual states can regulate them if they choose, the European court’s advocate general has said. The opinion may have far-reaching consequences for new breeding techniques that can remove specific parts of a plant’s genetic code and foster herbicide-resistant traits.Hundreds of millions of dollars have been invested in the technology, which could be subject to labelling, authorisation and safety checks, if the court decides it falls under the EU’s GM legislation later this year.

'Entire aisles are empty': Whole Foods employees reveal why stores are facing a crisis of food shortages

Whole Foods employees say stores are suffering from food shortages because of a newly implemented inventory-management system called order-to-shelf, or OTS. Whole Foods says the system reduces unnecessary inventory, lowers costs, and frees up employees to focus on customer service.Employees acknowledge that less food is spoiling in storage rooms, but they describe OTS as a "militaristic" system that crushes morale and leads to many items being out of stock."Last week, we ran out of onions and potatoes twice," an employee of a Brooklyn Whole Foods store said.

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