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Southern Departments of Agriculture Weigh in on Immigration Reform

The US Supreme Court’s ruling on Arizona’s immigration law brings back into the spotlight the dire need for immigration reform in the US. NC Ag Commissioner Steve Troxler and other commissioner’s from the Southern Association of Departments of Agriculture addressed this issue:

“We adopted a plan for immigration reform at our annual meeting last month. The Board of Security and Legal Workforce reform policy was originally authored by Texas’ Agricultural Commissioner Todd Staples and we have amended it along the way to make it more acceptable to members across the country.”

Troxler outlines some of the provisions that the group set forth to present to the national group later this year:

“We want to immediately change the failed work visa program. We want to implement a penalty and not a pardon policy for a person without proper authorization, existing persons without authorization who want to live and work in the US have got to first obtain conditional status under very strict guidelines. They have to demonstrate they have verifiable employment or be enrolled in a qualified training program. Then they have to submit to a criminal background check.”

Troxler also says that H-2A guest worker program needs to be reformed.

2012 NC Tobacco Features Double-header

The 2012 Tobacco tour is going to be a two-fer…on July 23 and 24th, the East Carolina Ag & Education Center will host a two-day event beginning the afternoon of the 23rd in Wilson, continuing through the 24th. Then on Wednesday July 25th the Piedmont Tour gets underway at the Oxford Tobacco Research Station near Oxford. For more information, or to register, visit their website.

NPPC Says Science Wins in Approval of Ractopamine

The United Nation’s food safety commission has approved a standard for the additive ractopamine – a safe and approved feed ingredient. Dave Warner of the National Pork Producers Council says his group is pleased with the decision. He says it was a long time coming – and science-based standards won out…

“They recognized by the science that this is a safe product, though it took them four years to do so. This was the fifth try at setting that standard. So this is a big deal to help promote leanness in pork production, as consumers want.”

Now that ractopamine has won world approval – Warner is hoping nations that have barred trade because of ractopamine will follow world standards and allow its use.

World Food Prices Down for Now

According to the monthly report of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization – world food prices dropped for a third straight month in June. That brought prices to their lowest level since September of 2010. The report showed that global prices of a basket of food commodities fell by 1.8-percent from May. Unfortunately – the agency says the dry weather of recent weeks could cause a spike. is dedicated to serving the agricultural industry in the Carolinas and Virginia with the latest ag news, exclusive regional weather station readings, and key crop market information. The website is a companion of the Southern Farm Network, provider of daily agricultural radio programming to the Carolinas since 1974. presents radio programs, interviews and news relevant to crop and livestock production and research throughout the mid-Atlantic agricultural community.