Secret sites are on USDA’s short list for new homes of relocated agencies
The finalists in Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue’s plan to move two research agencies out of Washington include “multiple” undisclosed sites in Indiana, a symbol of complaints of hidden motives and scanty material to support the move.
Sanders calls for ag trust-busters, large government role in farming
Fundamental change in U.S. agricultural and rural policy is “an absolute necessity,” said Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders on Sunday in calling for Teddy “Roosevelt-style trust-busting laws to stop monopolization of markets and break up massive agribusinesses.”
Trump threatens half a trillion dollars in China tariffs
Three days ahead of the arrival of a Chinese trade delegation, President Trump said he would impose 25 percent tariffs on $525 billion of Chinese products as leverage for a resolution of the Sino-U.S. trade war that led to retaliatory duties on U.S. exports including soybeans.
TODAY’S QUICK HITS
Biodiversity report compiles earth’s losses (AFP): An 1,800-page report produced by 400 experts for the United Nations — the first UN assessment of the natural world in 15 years — paints “a picture of widespread destruction wrought by man, some of it irreparable.”
Winter wheat production rebounds (Kansas Wheat): Scouts taking part in the annual Wheat Quality Council tour of the major winter wheat states said conditions indicate a large rebound from 2018, with yields in Kansas estimated to be up 28 percent; Oklahoma and Nebraska also expect larger crops.
MPP repayments are available (USDA): Carrying out a provision of the 2018 farm law, the USDA said dairy farmers are eligible for a repayment of part of the premiums they paid for coverage under the Margin Protection Program from 2014-17.
Nominees needed for NOSB slot (USDA): Nominations are due by May 20 for nominees to fill a vacancy on the National Organic Standards Board, which advises the USDA on organic agriculture, for a term expiring in January 2020.
‘Forever chemicals’ in milk (DTN/Progressive Farmer): If a New Mexico dairy farm is an indicator, food may be the next frontier in research on potentially toxic chemicals that show up in water supplies.
ON THE USDA CALENDAR
– Dairy industry groups hold annual ADPI/ABI conference, through Tuesday, Chicago.
– American Commodity Distribution Association conference, with the theme “The power of convergence,” through Wednesday, Niagara Falls, New York.
– USDA releases Vegetable and Pulses Outlook for May, 3 p.m. ET.
– USDA releases weekly Crop Progress report, 4 p.m. ET.
– House Rules Committee meets to decide what amendments can be offered to H.R. 2157, a $17.2-billion disaster-relief bill that includes agricultural aid; 5 p.m. ET, H-313, The Capitol.
– Interior Secretary David Bernhardt is lead witness at a House Appropriations subcommittee hearing on the proposed FY202 budget for the Interior Department, 3 p.m. ET, 2362-A Rayburn.
– Purdue University releases its monthly Ag Economy Barometer, a gauge of the agricultural economy’s health.
– USDA releases Hatchery Production Annual report, delayed from April 9 by the partial government shutdown, 3 p.m. ET.
– Vice Premier Liu He is scheduled to lead a Chinese delegation for talks with U.S. counterparts to resolve the Sino-U.S. trade war. There are hopes of an agreement this week. President Trump threatened an increase in tariffs on $200 billion in Chinese goods and to impose tariffs on an additional $325 billion in Chinese-made imports as a leverage for an agreement.
– Senate Appropriations subcommittee hearing on proposed FY2020 budget for CFTC, 10 a.m. ET, 124 Dirksen.
– The House could vote as early as today on H.R. 2157, a $17.2-billion disaster-relief bill that includes flood aid for the Midwest and $600 million for food stamps in Puerto Rico, say House leaders. Agriculture funding includes $500 million for the Emergency Conservation Program to rehabilitate farmland damaged by natural disasters.
– House Agriculture subcommittee hearing, “Reviewing the state of the farm economy,” 10 a.m. ET, 1300 Longworth.
– Consumer Federation of America holds annual Consumer Assembly, through Friday Washington.
– UN Food and Agriculture Organization releases monthly Food Price Index, Rome.
– USDA releases monthly Crop Production and WASDE reports, noon ET. The crop report will make the first estimate of this year’s winter wheat crop. WASDE will make the first USDA projections of the fall harvest, including the corn, soybean, wheat and cotton crops, the four most widely planted crops in the nation.