The health care reform measure approved in 2010 has come under fire - and now that the Republicans control the House of Representatives - a repeal vote has been scheduled. Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack says it’s not the whole health care bill that people are concerned with, just parts of the legislation:
“Essentially, if you had a debate about specific aspects of the bill, it would be one thing to perfect it, especially at a time when we ought to be focusing on job growth, ought to be focusing on how we might reduce the budget deficits that the government faces and get our financial house in order, especially when it’s not likely to go anywhere beyond the house. So kind of, what is the point?”
Vilsack says that the Senate has no plans to take up repealing health care legislation, and it has virtually no hope of reaching Obama’s desk.
EU Farmers Warn of Higher Costs, Growing Meat Imports
The European farmers federation has warned that the EU’s report on medium-term prospects shows a sharp decline in EU market shares in the meat sector, partly as a result of costly EU regulations.
Copa-Cogeca Secretary-General Pekka Pesonen predicts that meat imports will rise from the Latin American Trade bloc Mercosur which uses growth promoters that are banned in the EU, and has poor animal traceability.
Financial Reg’s Hurting Job Growth
Between stricter financial controls and the new health care legislation, President Obama's relationship with the business community has been a strained one. Yesterday, word spread that the President wants a review of federal regulations that may be hurting job growth:
“He’s trying to build bridges with the business community both for political reasons and economic reasons.”
Economist Nariman Behravesh (NAYR'-ih-man BAYR'-uh-vish) says the president has to do something dramatic to spur job growth because heavy regulations leave American businesses feeling cautious and less likely to hire.
USDA Issues Draft Guidelines for Organic Labeling
USDA has issued draft guidelines for the labeling and composition of foods made with organic ingredients.
According to the guidance, products in the "made with organic (specified ingredients or food groups)" labeling category must contain at least 70 percent certified organic agricultural products.
The remaining 30 percent may include agricultural ingredients that are conventionally produced.
China’s Robust Economy Nothing to Fear; Economist Dennis Gartman
Dennis Gartman, economist, former commodities trader and author of the Gartman Letter, LLC. Gartman says the Chinese GDP and ergo the rising middle class will at some point surpass the United States, but says this is nothing to fear:
“The best thing that’s going to happen to the United States and to our economy is that per-capita incomes in China are moving from the lower left to the upper right. Couple of things in this world you can count on; people’s incomes when they rise demand better food and better clothing, and demand more of each.”
Gartman was the economic speaker at the 22nd Annual Joint Commodities Conference. Listen to the entire presentation here...
Pizza for Breakfast?
Pizza leads the list of the top 10 fastest-growing breakfast trends, according to a recent menu analysis by Chicago-based food industry consultancy Technomic. Breakfast pizza rose from no mentions on menus a year ago to 12 at last count. Ham, egg and cheese sandwiches come in seventh on the list, with 30.4 percent growth in menu mentions, followed by specialty omelets with growth of 22.2 percent.