Pence: ‘We have a ways to go’ in settling trade war with China
In a speech at the Iowa State Fairgrounds, Vice President Mike Pence pointed on Thursday to China’s promises to roughly double its purchases of U.S. farm exports as evidence that there is “no greater fighter on trade than President Donald Trump.” The pledge was part of the “phase one” agreement that de-escalated the Sino-U.S. trade war and is scheduled for a six-month review by the two nations this weekend.
Anti-hunger groups see promise in Biden-Harris ticket
With Democratic nominee Joe Biden’s running mate confirmed, anti-hunger advocates say the presidential ticket is well equipped to tackle an urgent concern: food insecurity. Sen. Kamala Harris has consistently pushed for bolstering the social safety net, notably calling for the 15-percent increase in SNAP benefits that experts say would significantly reduce hunger.
Pandemic pummels farm income in Midwest and Plains, say ag lenders
The government’s coronavirus relief programs are an important shield for farmers and ranchers battling a sharp drop in income in the central Plains, ag lenders said in a Kansas City Fed survey released on Thursday. A similar survey of ag bankers in the Midwest by the Chicago Fed “revealed the broad financial distress from the Covid-19 pandemic in rural areas.”
TODAY’S QUICK HITS
July sets heat records: This July was the hottest on record in the Northern Hemisphere, topping the mark set last year, said the National Centers for Environmental Information. It was also the second-hottest July on record for the planet overall. (NOAA)
Central Valley is coronavirus hot spot: California’s agricultural Central Valley is “one of the worst coronavirus hot spots in the country.” The Covid-19 death toll in eight counties has soared to 200 a week, compared to 20 a week in April. (Los Angeles Times)
Derecho menaced Illinois crops: An estimated 6.95 million acres of corn and 5.82 million acres of soybeans in Illinois were in the path of the derecho that raked the Midwest this week. In neighboring Iowa, an estimated 10 million acres were affected. (DTN/Progressive Farmer)
Port takes measures against coronavirus threat: Authorities in the Chinese city of Zhoushan shut down part of the port after crew members of a freighter loaded with Brazilian soybeans tested positive for the coronavirus. Infections have been found on up to three other ships carrying soybeans to Chinese ports. (Agricensus)
An Alpine danger: aggressive cows: In the Alps, summer hikers are increasingly having dangerous encounters with cows protecting their calves. (Washington Post)