FDA names its first deputy commissioner for food
Seven months after saying he would put more emphasis on food safety, FDA commissioner Robert Califf announced the appointment of James Jones as the agency’s first deputy commissioner for human foods on Wednesday. Jones, a former EPA pesticide regulator, was a member of a task force calling for unified leadership on food safety duties that have been scattered among FDA offices.
Dairy subsidies could cost $19 billion without new farm bill
The cost of price support for dairy, and for an array of field crops, could skyrocket if Congress allows the 2018 farm law to expire without a replacement, estimated the Congressional Research Service.
TODAY’S QUICK HITS
Trump vows higher tariffs: Former president Donald Trump is enamored of a “universal baseline tariff,” possibly set at 10 percent, on virtually all U.S. imports — triple the current average duty of 3 percent — a move experts say could start a trade war. (Washington Post)
Supporting specialty crops: With this year’s funding of $72.9 million, the USDA has now awarded more than $1 billion through the Specialty Crop Block Grant Program, created in 2004 to enhance the competitiveness of fruits, vegetables, nuts, horticulture, and nursery crops. (USDA)
Irrigation as climate adaptation: In much of the Midwest, irrigation could help farmers deal with the higher temperatures and extreme weather events that are expected to become more prevalent because of climate change, say researchers. (Associated Press)
Rising and falling together: Wheat and corn yields tend to increase or decrease in tandem across the Southern Hemisphere, meaning a good or bad year for wheat in South America could be replicated in Australia, affecting global grain supplies. (farmdoc daily)
Burgum injured: North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum, a long-shot contender for the Republican presidential nomination, was on crutches after tearing an Achilles tendon the night before the first GOP debate. (USA Today)