Chairman Lucas Pushes Trade Agreement Ratification
House Ag Committee Chairman Frank Lucas says it is vital to agriculture that we capitalize on recent developments with tangible action on the free trade agreements with Colombia, Panama, and South Korea. Lucas says every day the U.S. delays implementing these agreements there are lost opportunities for job creation and economic growth.
Undercover Videos on the Chopping Block
New laws are on the horizon to try and stop one type of secret video. CBS’s Peter King has details:
The last few years have seen numerous undercover videos produced by animal advocates depicting sick or injured animals. Now lawmakers in four states are considering bills that would make it a crime to make those secret videos. Humane Society President Wayne Percelli:
"Essentially, it's an admission that they're not too proud of how they're conducting their business. They don't want the American public to see."
Farm video laws are being considered in Minnesota, Idaho, Iowa and Florida. Minnesota lawmakers say it is aimed at stopping harassment and possible sabotage.
Hearing Focused on Renewable Fuels
The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee held a hearing this week focusing on Oversight of Domestic Renewable Fuels. In prepared testimony, Brooke Coleman, Executive Director of the Advanced Ethanol Council said advanced ethanol will expand rapidly upon the market foundation being built by existing ethanol production if government policies allow advanced ethanol technologies to compete.
Carolina Farm Stewards Farm Tour this Weekend
Now in its’ 16th year, the Piedmont Farm Tour will take place this weekend. Fred Broadwell, Program Manager of the Carolina Farm Stewardship Association explains, while not a requirement to have a farm on the annual tour, Broadwell says that most farms are organic, or at minimum sustainable:
“This is, we think, the largest sustainable farming tour in the country, and what we particularly want to happen is for people to see how you can grow food without chemicals. So, most of these farms are organic, and they are growing amazing food, and not spraying pesticides, and not using synthetic fertilizers, so this is a really great way, ecologically to grow food.”
To learn more about this year’s tour:
“If you come to our website, which is Carolinafarmstewards.org, we have all the information there, and you can buy tickets. You can also get tickets at places like Weaver Street Market in Carborro, and Chapel Hill and Hillsborough.”
CRP General Sign-up Deadline Nears
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack reminds landowners, farmers and ranchers that the opportunity to enroll in the current Conservation Reserve Program general sign-up ends today. Producers who want to offer eligible land for CRP's competitive general sign-up may enroll at the Farm Service Agency county office where their farm records are maintained.