Issue new SNAP exemptions quickly, senators say
With the debate on the debt limit over, Democrats heading four Senate committees urged the Biden administration to act swiftly to remove a time limit on food stamps to able-bodied veterans, homeless people and young adults who “aged out” of foster care. The debt bill waived the time limit on those groups at the same time it lengthened the age range of people who must work at least 80 hours a month or be limited to 90 days of SNAP benefits in a three-year period.
Explosion in U.S. soybean plantings and production
In the past 20 years, U.S. soybean production has soared by 56 percent, driven by higher yields per acre and larger plantings of the oilseed, said the USDA on Monday. Soybeans are the most valuable farm export, although corn remains the most widely planted field crop.
PFAS present in more than 1,000 pesticides, analysis shows
PFAS, known as “forever chemicals” because of how long they last in the environment, are present in at least 1,400 pesticides, according to a new analysis from the Environmental Working Group. The chemicals are found in products ranging from herbicides applied to corn, sugar beets and cranberries to insecticides used on livestock and pets, to algaecides that protect boat paint.
TODAY’S QUICK HITS
Fifty percent higher: Carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere were measured at a record 424 parts per million (ppm) in May, typically the peak month in the northern hemisphere. That’s 3 ppm higher than a year ago, researchers said, and 50 percent higher than before the industrial era. (Scripps Institute of Oceanography)
Black Sea deal in peril: The Russian Foreign Ministry said it saw no prospects for extension of the Black Sea grain initiative, which allows export of grain from Ukraine, past the July 17 expiration date of the latest version of the agreement. (Reuters)
Robots on the farm: Automation and robotics are increasingly common in agriculture and are used mostly to navigate tractors or cultivate crops; harvesting, particularly for fruits and vegetables, “is further off in the future.” (USA Today)
Tradeoffs at the grocery store: After months of high food inflation, grocery shoppers are splurging less on gourmet items in favor of lower-priced alternatives, including store-brand goods. Some shoppers are moving to discount supermarkets, which saw an increase in sales this spring. (Los Angeles Times)
Little ag talk in Iowa: Eight aspirants for the Republican presidential nomination took part in the “Roast and Ride” kickoff for the Iowa caucuses, spending more time on “wokeness” and securing the U.S.-Mexico border than on agriculture. (DTN/Progressive Farmer)