With $8.75 billion, USDA nears bottom of pandemic aid list
Since it revamped its pandemic relief programs in March to “reach a broader set of producers,” the Agriculture Department has committed $8.75 billion in assistance to farmers and ranchers, including $750 million for the dairy sector and up to $1 billion for contract growers of pigs and poultry. Only a few items remained on its list for implementation on Tuesday, among them $700 million for biofuel producers.
Lowest grain prices in weeks due to Hurricane Ida
With exports in doubt because of hurricane damage to grain elevators near New Orleans, prices for corn, soybeans and wheat, the most widely planted U.S. crops, fell to their lowest levels in several weeks in futures trading on Tuesday. The fall harvest will begin soon and could glut the U.S. market if foreign sales are disrupted.
Today’s Quick Hits
Waukesha okays free meals: In the face of public criticism, the Waukesha school board reversed its June decision against providing free meals to all students, although one member said the temporary pandemic program “is wasteful by design.” (Wisconsin Public Radio)
Second look sought: The EPA wants to review its Trump-era approval of 31 exemptions for small refineries from complying with the Renewable Fuel Standard, seeking approval in court to do so. (DTN/Progressive Farmer)
Pandemic child obesity: Southern California children aged 5-11 have gained an average of five pounds during the pandemic. This “significant weight gain” meant 46 percent of them were overweight or obese, an increase of nearly 9 points, reported researchers. (Washington Post)
Biogas fast track: A new state law in North Carolina gives environmental regulators 90 days to approve or reject a hog farm’s application to be part of a project that collects methane from manure lagoons and sells it as renewable natural gas. (InsideClimate News)
Carbon-neutral flour: Through a combination of energy efficiency, purchase of credits and carbon sequestration, ADM’s flour milling operations achieved a net carbon neutral status. (ADM)