Senate passes first-ever climate mitigation bill for agriculture
Senate Agriculture chairwoman Debbie Stabenow was certain on Thursday that the House would follow the Senate in passing the first-ever climate mitigation bill for agriculture. Under the bill, the USDA would help farmers enter the carbon market, touted as the private enterprise way to earn money while combating climate change.
Infrastructure framework has $65 billion for universal broadband
President Biden said the $1.2-trillion infrastructure package negotiated with senators on Wednesday will “deliver high-speed internet to every American home” as well as repairing or rebuilding roads and bridges nationwide.
House, Senate bills boost rural energy funding fivefold
The USDA program that promotes rural renewable energy production and energy efficiency would see annual funding of $250 million along with a $1 billion injection to address a backlog in applications under companion Senate and House bills introduced Thursday.
Today’s Quick Hits
Farm debt falls: Ag bankers say farm debt is down 5 percent from a year ago and prospects for agriculture are strong heading into the summer thanks to robust demand for key farm commodities. Rising production costs and widespread drought, though, may alter that outlook. (Kansas City Federal Reserve)
Almonds from Idaho: A multiyear trial by the University of Idaho of 14 almond varieties is piquing interest in the state’s potential to expand as an almond producer. (Farm Progress)
Bigger corn crop: Production from China, the world’s No. 2 corn grower, is the leading factor in a projected 7 million-tonne increase in the global corn crop in 2021/22, to a record 1.2 billion tonnes. (International Grains Council)
Smaller hog inventory: There were 75.7 million head of hogs on U.S. farms at the start of this month, 2 percent fewer than a year ago, according to a quarterly estimate that was expected to boost futures prices. (USDA)
Vaccination incentive: Meat processor JBS said it will provide free beef, pork, and chicken for the next year to 50 families that get Covid-19 vaccinations in coming weeks at company-sponsored clinics. (Reuters)