ERS, NIFA relocation, dwindling orange groves in California and proposal to redo H-2A
Need a quick catch up on the news? Here are seven ag stories you might have missed this week.
1. The Labor Department has announced changes to the H-2A temporary agricultural worker program. The American Farm Bureau Federation welcomed the announcement. – American Agriculturalist
2. The Economic Research Service and National Institute of Food and Agriculture are hemorrhaging staff as less than two-thirds of the researchers asked to move from Washington, D.C., to Kansas City have agreed to the move. National Farmers Union is calling USDA’s relocation of the ERS and NIFA “misguided” and “detrimental to family farmers and ranchers and rural communities.” – NPR, Missouri Ruralist
3. China is calling on President Trump to decide if he wants to reach a trade deal with the country. Trump has threatened to impose additional tariffs, which will likely further derail additional negotiations. There has been little sign of progress between Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping since their meeting at the G20 summit late last month. – South China Morning News
4. Pork producers are losing $1 billion annually because of the trade war with China. The trade war with China has cost producers $8 per head, according to the president of the National Pork Producers Council, who testified before a House committee this week. – Bloomberg
5. A World Resources Institute report released this week says if we want to feed 10 billion people by 2050 we need to dramatically change the way we produce food, including increased reliance on genetically modified crops. – Farm Futures
6. Global sunflower oil trade is forecast to rise to the second highest mark on record, with strong demand from China, India and the European Union. Worldwide consumption is projected to top 19.9 million metric tons, making sunflower oil the fourth-largest consumed oil in the world. – Dakota Farmer
7. Bothwell Ranch is one of the few remaining orange groves in California’s San Fernando Valley. The 12-acre grove is at the center of a dispute between its owners, who have sought to sell it to luxury housing developers, and community members who believe it should stay an orchard. – The New York Times
And your bonus.
On Aug. 28, 2018, a tornado destroyed freestall barns that housed the milking herd, a machine shed and a heifer barn at Pebble Knolls Dairy near Brandon, Wis. The dairy farm is back up and running. – Wisconsin Agriculturalist