FDA approves genetically modified pig for food and medical use
For the first time, the Food and Drug Administration approved for food and human therapeutics on Monday a genomic alteration in domestic pigs that prevents them from producing a sugar that can cause allergic reactions in some people.
Meyer to succeed Johansson as USDA chief economist
The associate director of a University of Missouri think tank, Seth Meyer, will become USDA chief economist at the end of January, succeeding Rob Johansson, who held the post since 2015, said Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue on Monday.
USDA changes tactics against emerald ash borer
Quarantines failed to stop the spread of the emerald ash borer, which has killed tens of millions of ash trees in North America, so the USDA said on Monday it will take a new approach against the half-inch-long beetle.
Today’s Quick Hits
U.S. supports case against Prop 12: The Justice Department filed a friend-of-the-court brief asking the federal appeals court in San Francisco to reconsider its October denial of an injunction against California’s voter-approved Proposition 12 that guarantees more space for hogs, calves and chickens to move about, and bars sale of meat not produced under the same standards in other states. (North American Meat Institute)
First hearing on Black farmers: The incoming chairman of the House Agriculture Committee, Rep. David Scott of Georgia, said he plans to hold the committee’s first-ever hearing on the status of Black farmers as part of leadership “in eliminating racial injustice and discrimination in our agriculture industry.” (Politico)
Rural Covid-19 deaths set record, again: More than 3,800 rural Americans died of Covid-19 last week, the sixth week in a row for a record number of deaths, but the rate of new coronavirus infections has slowed a bit since Thanksgiving. (Daily Yonder)
Food prices on the rise in Russia: The Russian economy minister announced an export tax on wheat, as well as an wheat export cap from Feb. 15 to June 30, as part of government efforts to stabilize food prices, which are rising at the same time Russian incomes are falling because of the pandemic. (Reuters)
Neighbors fight 10,000-hog farm: Opponents, including nearby land owners, say state laws and regulations have made it difficult to fight the 10,000-hog farm United Hog Systems plans to build in Livingston County, 90 miles northwest of Kansas City. (Kansas City Star)