Brazil to Impose Cotton Sanctions
Brazil has moved to retaliate against the United States over U.S. cotton subsidies. But that South American Country says the U.S. can settle the trade dispute through negotiations. The U.S. has 30 days to do so or Brazilian wheat tariffs will be increased to 30 percent. The World Trade Organization gave Brazil the formal go-ahead last year to impose sanctions on U.S. imports after the body ruled the U.S. government spent too much subsidizing cotton farmers and on an export credit guarantee program.
USDA Declares Primary Natural Disaster Area
Virtually all of Georgia and parts of five neighboring states are involved in the latest USDA declaration of a primary natural disaster area based on excessive rainfall that occurred from September 2009 and continuing. 98 counties in Georgia have been declared to be in the primary natural disaster area. 58 additional counties in Georgia, 8 in Alabama, 8 in Florida, 2 in North Carolina, 9 in South Carolina and 3 in Tennessee also qualify for federal relief because they are contiguous counties to the primary disaster area.
Gestation Flex Pens Working
Moving sows into group pens is having mixed results. That’s according to Janeen Salak-Johnson, associate professor in animal sciences at the University of Illinois. While group sow housing works, research at the university shows this practice does not answer welfare concerns or improve sow performance.
Jury Awards Neighbors for Odors
Premium Standard Farms questions its future investment in the state of Missouri after a jury awarded 15 people 11-million dollars over hog odors at a farm north of Kansas City. Neighbors of the farm said pig odors nauseated them and forced them to stay indoors with the windows shut. Officials for Premium Standard Farms, which owns the Gentry County operation, say they will appeal.
HSUS Testing Federal Waters with Minor California Legislators
Two U.S. Representatives from southern California are sponsoring legislation that would force federal agencies to purchase meat only from sources that raised the animals free from cruelty and abuse.
Democrat Diane Watson and Republican Elton Gallegly introduced the Prevention of Farm Animal Cruelty Act to set a higher standard for food purchased by the federal government. Their bill requires that food purchased for federal programs come from animals raised with enough room to stand up, lie down, turn around and stretch their limbs.
American Farm Bureau lobbyist Mary Kay Thatcher says she doesn’t think the bill will go anywhere….
The good news is that the people that introduced it are on a little bit lower ranking in the scheme of things than the people that did before. And she doubts that there’ll be much activity this year on the federal level, Thatcher feels that HSUS will continue their focus on the state level.
HSUS - the Humane Society of the United States - praised the Watson-Gallegly proposal and encouraged Congress to act swiftly to pass it.
According to National Farmers Union lobbyist Chandler Goule - HSUS leaders don’t want their rank and file members to know what the organization is really up to. What your average American that isn’t in agriculture production does not understand is that HSUS is a $125-130- million dollar political machine and it has zero animals in it’s care. This is the other thing that I tells people when I go out to speak, you have all the grandmother’s and granddad’s that are donating money to HSUS think that they’re getting cats and dogs off their streets, when they’re not. They’re giving HSUS more ammunition to come into your state and regulate production agriculture. If you want to donate money to dogs and cats, give money to your local animal shelter.