The vote on final passage of the 2013 Farm Bill will be held today at 5:30 Eastern time. The Senate agreed Thursday morning to end debate on the farm bill and proceed to a final vote – invoking cloture on a vote of 75 to 22.
Senate Ag Chair Debbie Stabenow says it’s a win win…
“We have eliminated over 100 authorizations and programs that were duplicate, didn’t work anymore, were not the right thing to do from a tax payer standpoint. They were consolidated in a way that has not been done – I would argue- for decades. And we have reduced the deficit by more than the last bill, $24 billion dollars.”
It isn’t the bill Nebraska Senator Mike Johanns says he would have written, but added that farmers and ranchers need the long-term certainty only a farm bill can provide. He says the Senate measure is better than no farm bill and significantly better than the bill passed by the House Agriculture Committee. Once the bill is passed, it appears the Senate will then move on to the immigration reform bill.
Administration Has No Plans to Re-Introduce Farm Labor Rules
Kansas Senator Jerry Moran pressed Acting U.S. Department of Labor Secretary Seth Harris on the farm labor rules originally proposed by the Obama Administration in April of 2012 – asking for confirmation the Department would not reintroduce the rules. Harris made it clear the farm labor rules will not be proposed again during the remainder of the Obama Administration. Moran had serious concerns about the previously proposed rules – as the Labor Department proposed doing away with successful farm safety training and certification programs like cooperative extension, 4-H and FFA. Moran led several Senators in asking former Labor Secretary Hilda Solis to withdraw the proposed rules.
Pork Checkoff Introducting New Names at the Grocery Store
The Pork Checkoff has launched a new consumer marketing campaign. This campaign coincides with the new pork cut names. Newly-elected National Pork Board President Karen Richter says this effort is designed to create a better consumer understanding of pork cuts:
“The new cut names have been in the works for several years. It started with research done in cooperation with the beef industry to address consumer confusion on meat purchasing. We learned that the consumer is very confused about both beef and pork names. The simplified names we have recommended to retailers also come with a new label that takes out the industry jargon and offers consumers tips on proper cooking and techniques.”
New York Goes Nuts for the 'Cronut'
In New York City, foodies are in a frenzy over the Cronut. AP correspondent Julie Walker reports.
“Its part croissant, part doughnut and all the rage according to cronut customers: ‘It has a good croissant layering inside and a nice sugary crunch on the outside’. That’s because its deep fried. Shop owner and chef of the creation is quiet on the nutrition aspect: ‘We wanted to make something fun to eat and something you’ve never seen before.”