Keyword: crops

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  • Global warming's bad, but farming can adapt, Cargill exec says

    06/26/2014 6:21:11 AM PDT · by TurboZamboni · 14 replies
    Pioneer Press ^ | 6-24-14 | Tom Webb
    Climate change may shrink the ice caps and devastate the coasts, but here in the farmlands of Minnesota and the Dakotas, a milder climate may bring some benefits, a new report suggests. That was one twist in a report issued Tuesday by a group of top corporate and political officials, including Greg Page, executive chairman of Wayzata-based agribusiness giant Cargill. While the group's other notables warned Tuesday about possible devastation ahead, Page delivered a conflicted -- even hopeful -- view of how food production would adjust to a changing climate. For instance, a warming climate is expected to shift the...
  • Monarch butterfly decline linked to spread of GM crops

    06/09/2014 5:05:10 AM PDT · by NowApproachingMidnight · 62 replies
    CBC ^ | 6/4/2014 | Emily Chung
    The main cause of the monarch butterfly's decline is the loss of milkweed — its food — in its U.S. breeding grounds, a new study has found. That all but confirms that the spread of genetically modified crops is indirectly killing the monarch.
  • California: Before And After The Drought, And Why It's Only Going To Get Worse

    02/04/2014 6:01:28 AM PST · by blam · 21 replies
    Zero Hedge ^ | 2-4-2014 | Tyler Durden
    California: Before And After The Drought, And Why It's Only Going To Get WorseZero Hedge Tyler Durden on 02/03/2014While the Northeast is blanketed by another winter storm, California has its own, quite inverse, climatic problems in the form of a historic drought which as Bloomberg reports, is forcing farmers in the fertile central valley region to fallow thousands of acres of fields and has left 17 rural towns so low on drinking water that the state may need to start trucking in supplies. It is so bad that water reservoirs are at about 60 percent of average, according to state...
  • Unapproved genetically modified wheat from Monsanto found in Oregon field

    05/30/2013 8:00:45 PM PDT · by Ron C. · 404 replies
    Washington Post ^ | May 30, 2013 | Steven Mufson
    Japan, the largest market for U.S. wheat exports, suspended imports from the United States and canceled a major purchase of white wheat on Thursday after the recent discovery of unapproved genetically modified wheat in an 80-acre field in Oregon. How the altered crop made its way to the Oregon field remains a mystery. The strain was developed by Monsanto to make wheat resistant to the company’s own industry-leading weed killer. Monsanto tested the type of altered seed in more than a dozen states, including Oregon, between 1994 and 2005, but it was never approved for commercial use. Yet the Agriculture...
  • 'Beemageddon' Threatens US With Food Disaster

    05/07/2013 8:16:38 PM PDT · by Veggie Todd · 50 replies
    Russia Today ^ | May 7, 2013 | Unknown
    US honey bees have been dying by the tens of millions, with annual death rates of about 30 percent. With fewer bees to pollinate fruits and vegetables each year, 'beemageddon' may soon cause the collapse of the agriculture industry.
  • Why does America regulate the trade in raisins?

    04/15/2013 7:27:33 PM PDT · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 20 replies
    The Economist ^ | April 14, 2013 | The Economist Explains
    THE Supreme Court has frequently handed down judgments that have shaken America to its core. Now, it has turned its attention to the raisin. A group of farmers has brought a complaint about the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937, under which the government confiscates part of the annual national raisin crop. The Court is considering whether the arrangement is constitutional. But why is a country that generally celebrates red-blooded capitalism regulating the raisin trade in the first place?Since the 1940s a government agency called the Raisin Administrative Committee has confiscated a portion of the annual raisin crop: 47% in 2003 and...
  • Raisin farmers in SCOTUS case face $650K charge if they don’t give half their crop to the feds

    01/31/2013 6:54:33 AM PST · by SeekAndFind · 25 replies
    Hotair ^ | 01/31/2013 | MARY KATHARINE HAM
    47 percent of their crop, to be precise. It’s J.J. Abrams’ world. We’re all just living in it.Luckily, the Supreme Court decided to take the case of the Horne family, so they may end up retaining the right to freely sell the raisin crop they’ve duly produced, but how is it that they must appeal to the highest court in the land for that right? Well, it all started in 1937, as so many good things do, when the federal government began requiring raising farmers to lay aside a tribute portion of their crops in order to control supply and...
  • Scientists discover genetic key to efficient crops

    01/27/2013 7:02:13 PM PST · by Sir Napsalot · 9 replies
    Cornell Univ Chronicles Online ^ | 1-23-2013 | Krishna Ramanujan
    With projections of 9.5 billion people by 2050, humankind faces the challenge of feeding modern diets to additional mouths while using the same amounts of water, fertilizer and arable land as today. Cornell researchers have taken a leap toward meeting those needs by discovering a gene that could lead to new varieties of staple crops with 50 percent higher yields. The gene, called Scarecrow, is the first discovered to control a special leaf structure, known as Kranz anatomy, which leads to more efficient photosynthesis. Plants photosynthesize using one of two methods: C3, a less efficient, ancient method found in most...
  • First, the Bad News

    01/16/2013 3:34:02 AM PST · by Kaslin · 8 replies
    Townhall.com ^ | January 16, 2013 | John Stossel
    We in the media rarely lie to you. But that leaves plenty of room to take things wildly out of context. That's where most big scare stories come from, like recent headlines about GM foods. GM means "genetically modified," which means scientists add genes, altering the plant's DNA, in this case to make the crop resistant to pests. Last week, Poland joined seven other European countries in banning cultivation of GM foods. The politicians acted because headlines screamed about how GM foods caused huge tumors in rats. The pictures of the rats are scary. Some have tumors the size of...
  • Monsanto's GM Corn And Cancer In Rats: Real Scientists Deeply Unimpressed.

    09/21/2012 5:47:59 AM PDT · by Aussiebabe · 9 replies
    Forbes ^ | 9/20/2012 | Tim Worstall
    Experts not involved in the study were skeptical, with one accusing the French scientists of going on a "statistical fishing trip" and others describing its methods as well below standard. The animals on the genetically modified (GM) diet suffered mammary tumors, as well as severe liver and kidney damage, according to the peer-reviewed study which was published in the journal Food and Chemical Toxicology and presented at a news conference in London. The researchers said 50 percent of male and 70 percent of female rats died prematurely, compared with only 30 percent and 20 percent in the control group.
  • World braced for new food crisis

    07/20/2012 7:24:27 AM PDT · by Perseverando · 20 replies
    Financial Times ^ | July 19, 2012 | Jack Farchy and Gregory Meyer
    The world is facing a new food crisis as the worst US drought in more than 50 years pushes agricultural commodity prices to record highs. Corn and soyabean prices surged to record highs on Thursday, surpassing the peaks of the 2007-08 crisis that sparked food riots in more than 30 countries. Wheat prices are not yet at record levels but have rallied more than 50 per cent in five weeks, exceeding prices reached in the wake of Russia’s 2010 export ban. The drought in the US, which supplies nearly half the world’s exports of corn and much of its soyabeans...
  • The case for mandatory GMO labeling

    06/18/2012 3:53:02 PM PDT · by southern rock · 26 replies
    Natural News ^ | 06/18/2012 | Mike Adams
    The case for mandatory GMO labeling - even if you believe in limited government and the free market (NaturalNews) Now that the GMO labeling ballot measure has been officially accepted onto the California ballot, Monsanto is gearing up its propaganda campaign that aims to convince people you don't need to know what you're eating! Trust us, we're the food companies! We never lie, do we? For the record, I'm an opponent of most government mandates against individuals. When the government says you have to give your children vaccine shots, that's a violation of your liberty. When Mayor Bloomberg says you...
  • A New Stragedy to Feed the World

    12/24/2011 10:47:13 PM PST · by count-your-change · 33 replies · 1+ views
    Enter Stage Right ^ | 12/19 2011 | Dennis T. Avery
    "Can we successfully grow more plants per acre as a future strategy for increasing our crop yields and food production? Sixty thousand corn plants per acre -- twice Iowa's current average -- could be one route to higher productivity. The world will need twice as much food in 2050, and we'll need to triple the crop yields on the best land. Doubling would be a very good start."
  • Alabama: Inmates can replace Hispanic farmhands

    10/09/2011 1:24:37 AM PDT · by Cincinatus' Wife · 97 replies
    Politico ^ | October 8, 2011 | MACKENZIE WEINGER
    Alabama farmers frantically looking for workers to replace those that have fled the state in the wake of its tough new immigration law should just stop by their local prison, according to the head of Alabama’s agriculture department. John McMillan, commissioner of the Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries, told the Montgomery Advertiser on Thursday that inmate labor through the state’s work-release program offers a short-term solution to the sudden labor shortage that has hit Alabama since enforcement of its illegal immigration law kicked in. Some farmers have said the state’s new law has driven away Hispanic migrant farm workers...
  • Japan:Radiation Expert Predicts More Threats(radioactive rice to come?)

    07/02/2011 4:33:39 PM PDT · by TigerLikesRooster · 3 replies
    WSJ ^ | 07/02/11 | YUKA HAYASHI
    <p>TOKYO—A former nuclear adviser to Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan blasted the government's handling of the crisis, and predicted more revelations of radiation threats to the public in the coming months.</p>
  • Crops worth $150 to 200 million perish in Mississippi floods

    05/12/2011 8:26:50 AM PDT · by Qbert · 12 replies
    IBTimes ^ | May 12, 2011 | IB Times Staff Reporter
    Nearly 600 homes have been flooded and thousands evacuated in Rena Lara as waters from the Mississippi river and its tributaries rose to record levels on Tuesday. Officials have assured residents of immediate relief measures and Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour puts the loss of crops from the floods at $150 million to $200 million. He said, “The state is asking local officials to get in touch with people who might have no electricity and phones and thus no way to get word of the flooding.” [Snip] The record levels of water in the Mississippi River since the 1920s and 1930s...
  • BE FOREWARNED : Mexico loses 80-100% of crops to freeze, US prices to skyrocket

    02/18/2011 8:30:20 PM PST · by Robert Drobot · 73 replies
    Digital Journal ^ | A.D. 11 February 2011 | Lynn Herrmann
    According to Sysco’s notice sent out this week: “The early reports are still coming in but most are showing losses of crops in the range of 80 to 100%. Even shade house product was hit by the extremely cold temps. It will take 7-10 days to have a clearer picture from growers and field supervisors, but these growing regions haven’t had cold like this in over half a century.” At this time of year, Mexico is a major supplier to the US and Canada for green beans, cucumbers, squash, eggplant, asparagus, peppers and round and Roma tomatoes. Compounding the problem...
  • Making Hay (The Supreme Court will decide if genetically modified crops "contaminate" nature)

    06/14/2010 6:46:14 AM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 10 replies · 319+ views
    National Review ^ | 06/13/2010 | Jon Entine
    This month, the Supreme Court will rule on its first-ever case involving genetically modified (GM) crops. It also prepares to welcome a new member who, as solicitor general, intervened on behalf of the controversial technology, angering many liberals. The case revolves around alfalfa hay — a nutritious, easily digestible livestock feed that at $8 billion a year is the country’s fourth-most-valuable crop — and specifically, GM alfalfa seeds produced by the company Monsanto. These seeds, as part of the company’s Roundup Ready line, are genetically modified to tolerate glyphosate, an herbicide that is commercially known as Roundup. When farmers use...
  • Mystery Crop Damage Threatens Hundreds Of Acres

    06/02/2010 7:02:32 AM PDT · by CloudsofFlight · 30 replies · 1,148+ views
    wreg.com ^ | 6-1-10 | Shaun Chaiyabhat
    (Memphis 6/1/2010) A mystery is unfolding across MidSouth farms. Something is killing crops, trees, even weeds and nobody can explain why. Farmers are scratching their heads and some are worried their crops may be lost to the mysterious plague. It's happening along a large swath of land near the Shelby and Tipton county border along Herring Hill Road and elsewhere near the Mississippi River bottoms. Tiny dots appear to have burned onto leaves of all types of plants, and they appear different depending on the plant. On corn stalks, the dots seem to turn white in the center. On other...
  • Area farmers ponder 'plant B' after once-in-lifetime flood(TENN FLOOD keeps on giving)

    05/20/2010 7:04:16 AM PDT · by GailA · 23 replies · 731+ views
    The Commercial Appeal ^ | 5/20/10 | Toby Sells
    While May's flood waters are receding into memory for most Memphians, they remain a stark reality for many West Tennessee farmers. These growers still have fields under water or too wet to plant, planted acres wiped clean of seed, fertilizer and topsoil, and still-broken equipment and supply lines on their property. Many are taking a wait-and-see approach to what they will plant as their prior expectations were washed away by what some call a once-in-a-lifetime weather event. A cotton plant that wasn't washed away pokes out of debris left by flooding in one of Moody's fields. When the water recedes,...
  • Jim Rogers: Brace Yourself For Food Shortages, Thanks To The Banks Hoarding Cash

    01/15/2010 9:21:42 AM PST · by FromLori · 71 replies · 3,189+ views
    The Business Insider ^ | 1/15/10 | Vincent Fernando
    Jim Rogers is sounding the alarm -- buy agricultural commodities ahead of the riots. The financial crisis has cut off investment in agriculture, with many farmers unable to get loans for fertilizer according to Mr. Rogers. Of course, this means agricultural commodities will make a killing: CNBC: "Sometimes in the next few years we're going to have very serious shortages of food everywhere in the world and prices are going to go through the roof." Cotton and coffee are good buys because they are very distressed, while sugar, despite the fact that it has gone up a lot, is still...
  • Question about Texas

    12/26/2009 6:33:27 PM PST · by DGHoodini · 83 replies · 2,543+ views
    TV program prop anomaly | 12/26/09 | DGHoodini
    Just a quick question, that I am pretty sure I already know the answer to, but have a nagging doubt about: Was cotton ever a cash crop in Texas? I keep thinking 'No', but as I said, I'm getting a little voice in my head saying:"it might'a been...". Anyone know the answer?
  • Crops Headed For A Tough Harvest

    11/05/2009 6:19:50 AM PST · by blam · 46 replies · 1,217+ views
    Seeking Alpha ^ | 11-03-2009 | Jim Delaney
    Crops Headed For A Tough Harvest by: Jim Delaney November 03, 2009 Although it appears the prospects for the producers of porcine products have prettied, yes, lipstick included, that cannot be said for all of the ‘ole MacDonald’s in the country. The U.S. Department of Agriculture reported recently that due to a late planting season and a cooler and wetter fall than normal, only 20% of the corn crop is out of the fields vs. an average of 58% during the years of 2004-2008. “It’s getting scarier. The longer we go, the more mold keeps growing and the more ears...
  • Politicians are as stubborn as a Missouri mule.

    09/18/2009 10:33:19 AM PDT · by pansgold · 7 replies · 1,244+ views
    9/18/2009 | pansgold
    A farmer in Missouri used a mule to plow his garden every spring. This spring the mule just stopped plowing and stood there defiantly. The farmer begged the mule, asked the mule even pleaded and finally demanded the mule get back to work. In frustration, the farmer called his father and asked for his help. Twenty minutes later his father drives up. When he got out of his pickup truck he retrieved a 3 foot 2x4 from the truck box and walked over to the mule. First he whispered something into the mules ear but the mule didn’t budge. All...
  • Farmers sell wives after crops fail

    09/08/2009 9:58:33 PM PDT · by Nachum · 13 replies · 925+ views
    Irish Examiner ^ | 9/8/09 | Dielle D’Souza
    FARMERS in north India are selling their wives to survive, it has been revealed. Left without money due to failing crops, farmers in Bundelkhand, Uttar Pradesh, have reportedly sold their wives to money lenders for 4,000-12,000 rupees (€55-€170). The more beautiful the woman, the higher the price, it was claimed. The deals are allegedly being settled on a legal stamp paper under the heading Vivaha Anubandh (marriage contract). Most of the women are illiterate and cannot read the "contract".
  • Crop report reflects abundant crop, meaning lower market prices

    08/17/2009 7:05:05 AM PDT · by Military family member · 17 replies · 826+ views
    The Journal of Business ^ | August 16, 2009 | Julie Douglas
    WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - A Purdue agricultural economist and state agricultural officials at the Indiana State Fair on Wednesday (Aug. 12) were surprised at the abundant 2009 crop projected by a U.S. Department of Agriculture report, especially given the difficult time farmers throughout the Eastern Corn Belt had getting their crops planted this spring. The USDA's Crop Production Report has U.S. corn production at 12.8 billion bushels, up 5 percent from 2008. Soybean production is estimated at 3.2 billion bushels, up 8 percent from this past year, while wheat production is estimated at 2.18 billion bushels, 3 percent higher. Indiana...
  • 'Serious threat' from bee disease (BBC disease spreads elsewhere)

    08/03/2009 9:26:02 AM PDT · by combat_boots · 1 replies · 479+ views
    BBC ^ | July 31, 2009 | UNKNOWN
    Beekeepers in Scotland have warned of a serious threat to the industry after a deadly disease was discovered. At least four hives and three apiaries in Perthshire have been found to be infected with American Foulbrood (AFB). The honeybee disease was discovered while investigating cases of European Foulbrood (EFB) in the area. Colonies infected with EFB can be saved if the case is not serious. However, those with AFB cannot be treated with antibiotics and have to be destroyed. Foulbrood is caused by a bacterium which gets inside bee larvae and uses up their food supply, starving them to death....
  • HR 2749: Food Safety’s Scorched Earth Policy

    07/23/2009 5:11:36 AM PDT · by FromLori · 69 replies · 2,423+ views
    Farm Wars ^ | 7/22/09
    HR 2749 is being rushed through Congress, and the house may look to suspend the rules and fast track the bill at Obama’s request. Just what can we expect from this legislation? A lot more of the following: Dick Peixoto planted hedges of fennel and flowering cilantro around his organic vegetable fields in the Pajaro Valley near Watsonville to harbor beneficial insects, an alternative to pesticides. He has since ripped out such plants in the name of food safety, because his big customers demand sterile buffers around his crops. No vegetation. No water. No wildlife of any kind. “I was...
  • Pest-infested fence shipment stopped in Seattle

    05/12/2009 2:14:01 AM PDT · by Cindy · 22 replies · 1,318+ views
    KING 5.com ^ | May 5, 2009, 7:46 pm PDT | Gary Chittim
    Note: Video included. # SEATTLE – The U.S. Customs and Border agents have detained 11 shipments of reed fencing from China that were so infested with plant pests and diseases, it could have killed crops.
  • Future world wheat crops threatened by Ug99 stem rust

    04/02/2009 1:38:21 PM PDT · by Squidpup · 23 replies · 1,743+ views
    Ag Weekly ^ | March 31, 2009 | DALE HILDEBRANT
    NASHVILLE, Tenn. - A virulent strain of wheat stem rust, Ug99, that sprung up in Africa in 1999 has now spread into Iran and threatens to spread into other wheat producing regions of Asia and eventually the entire world. That was the warning Dr. Jim Peterson, wheat breeder at Oregon State University and chair of the National Wheat Improvement Committee (NWIC), re-ported to the NAWG Research and Tech-nology Committee during the Commodity Classic in Nashville. Ug99 is a race of stem rust that blocks the vascular tissues in cereal grains including wheat, oats and barley. Unlike leaf or stripe rusts...
  • USDA report says climate change affecting crops, livestock

    05/28/2008 7:29:29 AM PDT · by PeaRidge · 32 replies · 193+ views
    The Chicago Tribune ^ | 5/28/08 | Judith Kohler
    USDA report says climate change affecting crops, livestock By JUDITH KOHLER | Associated Press Writer 12:06 AM CDT, May 28, 2008 Article tools DENVER - Climate change is increasing the risk of U.S. crop failures, depleting the nation's water resources and contributing to outbreaks of invasive species and insects, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said in a report released Tuesday. Those and other problems for the U.S. livestock and forestry industries will persist for at least the next 25 years, said the report compiled by 38 scientists
  • Andean Crops Cultivated Almost 10,000 Years Ago

    01/17/2008 3:55:35 PM PST · by blam · 22 replies · 83+ views
    Discover Magazine ^ | 1-15-2008 | Michael Abrams
    Andean Crops Cultivated Almost 10,000 Years Ago by Michael Abrams Archaeologists have long thought that people in the Old World were planting, watering, weeding, and harvesting for a good 5,000 years before anyone in the New World did such things. But fresh evidence, in the form of Peruvian squash seeds, indicates that farming in the New and Old Worlds was nearly concurrent. In a paper the journal Science published last June, Tom Dillehay, an anthropological archaeologist at Vanderbilt University, revealed that the squash seeds he found in the ruins of what may have been ancient storage bins on the lower...
  • Crops That Shut Down Pests' Genes

    11/06/2007 8:33:55 AM PST · by BGHater · 9 replies · 69+ views
    Technology Review ^ | 05 Nov 2007 | Katherine Bourzac
    Monsanto is developing genetically modified plants that use RNA interference to kill the insects that eat them. Researchers have created plants that kill insects by disrupting their gene expression. The crops, which initiate a gene-silencing response called RNA interference, are a step beyond existing genetically modified crops that produce toxic proteins. Because the new crops target particular genes in particular insects, some researchers suggest that they will be safer and less likely to have unintended effects than other genetically modified plants. Others warn that it is too early to make such predictions and that the plants should be carefully tested...
  • Texas bats prevent millions in crop damage

    06/30/2007 5:11:14 AM PDT · by Dysart · 19 replies · 1,024+ views
    Star-Telegram ^ | 6-30-07 | BILL HANNA
    MASON -- Several hours before dusk, the Mexican free-tailed bats begin stirring inside the Eckert James River Cave outside of Mason.As dusk approaches, the bats explode from the cave's mouth, creating a tornado-like vortex that allows the colony to soar higher and higher in the night sky.During the last decade, scientists have learned these nightly feedings offer far greater benefits than providing entertainment for tourists.Scientists gathered at the cave about 100 miles northwest of Austin are heralding them as nature's pesticide.The research shows that some of the bats' favorite delicacies are insects like the corn earworm (also known as the...
  • KS and OK FReepers, how's the weatner? (vanity)

    06/03/2007 1:13:23 PM PDT · by SAJ · 6 replies · 593+ views
    SAJ's fevered brain ^ | 3 June 2007 | SAJ
    Hi, folks! Getting some contradictory information, and I know you guys can straighten me out. KS particularly and OK somewhat also, have been very wet all year. That's fine until it's time to harvest wheat. I'm hearing tales that the crop is so wet that it's starting to sprout from the head. Questions -- Is this true? Is the ground really that wet? It has looked for a couple of days after Friday that KS and OK are no precip with a nice breeze, but...who trusts weatherguessers, eh? If anyone would care to offer a local weather report, esp. regarding...
  • Rice with human proteins to take root in Kansas

    05/21/2007 11:02:22 AM PDT · by LibWhacker · 19 replies · 552+ views
    Nature ^ | 5/18/07 | Emma Marris
    Pharmed food crop approved for growth despite controversy.Rice modified to express proteins often found in breast milk will be planted in Kansas. It's certainly not the first crop designed to produce pharmaceutical proteins given the go-ahead in the United States or elsewhere (see 'Turning plants into protein factories'). But this is among the first food crops containing genes that produce human proteins to gain approval for large-scale planting. Many other pharmaceutical genetically-modified (GM) crops are grown indoors or in inedible plants such as tobacco. The rice strains, made by Ventria Bioscience in Sacramento, California, produce lysozyme, lactoferrin and human serum...
  • Worker bees take off (disappearing honeybees)

    04/24/2007 8:24:42 PM PDT · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 80 replies · 2,710+ views
    Washington Times ^ | April 24, 2007 | Deborah Zabarenko
    Go to work, come home. Go to work -- and vanish without a trace. Billions of bees have done just that, leaving the crop fields they are supposed to pollinate, and scientists are mystified about why. The phenomenon was noticed late last year in the United States, where honeybees are used to pollinate $15 billion worth of fruits, nuts and other crops annually. Disappearing bees also have been reported in Europe and Brazil. Commercial beekeepers would set their bees near a crop field as usual and come back in two or three weeks to find the hives bereft of foraging...
  • Genetically Engineered Organisms Invade Our Planet - What's the Harm?

    03/13/2007 10:37:24 PM PDT · by FLOutdoorsman · 13 replies · 640+ views
    Epoch Times ^ | 13 March 2007 | Gary Feuerberg
    For a long time now, Americans have been told by the scientists who developed genetically modified (GM) crops and organisms that GM is safe and wonderful. This was done with the blessing of government regulators, such as the Federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). It was alleged that GM crops, such as Bt and Roundup Ready, to use the best known biotech products, are good for biodiversity, increase yields, are resistant to pests, reduce the need for pesticides, are more profitable for the farmers, and less labor intensive. But a close examination of...
  • Bill would hold makers of engineered crops liable for damage

    03/02/2007 5:55:35 AM PST · by FLOutdoorsman · 50 replies · 520+ views
    The Ledger ^ | 28 Feb 2007 | Steve Lawrence
    Stepping into the middle of a growing debate, a freshman assemblyman has introduced legislation that would make companies developing genetically engineered crops liable for damages if their work results in contamination of other fields. The bill by Assemblyman Jared Huffman also would ban open-field production of genetically engineered crops used in the development of medications. And it would require growers to give county agriculture commissioners at least 30 days notice before engaging in open-field development of other genetically modified plants. Huffman, D-San Rafael, said the measure is needed to protect California farmers against significant losses if their conventional or organic...
  • Calif. farmers and workers get aid after freeze destroys crops

    01/25/2007 7:46:00 PM PST · by NormsRevenge · 11 replies · 380+ views
    AP on Bakersfield Californian ^ | 1/25/07 | Olivia Munoz - ap
    Aid has cropped up for California workers and growers hurt by a devastating cold snap that froze more than $1 billion in crops and left thousands jobless. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger announced Thursday he had issued an executive order to waive a one-week waiting period required before filing for unemployment. The frigid temperatures that dealt an $800 million blow to citrus growers and other industries earlier this month left more than 12,000 farm workers jobless. "This way we can provide quick help for the people who need help right way," the governor said during a visit to Tulare County where he...
  • Nut Nappers Loot Crops

    11/08/2006 8:34:16 AM PST · by stainlessbanner · 3 replies · 186+ views
    local6 ^ | November 8, 2006
    RESNO, Calif. -- At first, Larry Ladd just let it go. But after the farmer caught six thieves plundering his walnut orchard in less than a day, he knew he had a problem. He's not the only one. As prices for almonds and walnuts rise with demand, a growing black market has emboldened nutnappers to cut holes in fences, sneak into distribution centers and drive off with truckloads of nuts. "At first, I'd just ask the deputy to impress upon them that this is the wrong thing to do," said Ladd. "But then it got ridiculous." California farmers like Ladd...
  • Ohio farmers frustrated by crop circles

    09/10/2006 8:59:42 PM PDT · by Marius3188 · 13 replies · 526+ views
    Dayton Daily News ^ | 10 Sep 2006 | AP
    MARION — Farmers are angry about an increasing number of crop circles popping up in their fields, costing them time and money. The circles — crops that have been flattened to form geometric patterns — have nothing to do with supernatural or extraterrestrial beings. Farmers say it's probably rambunctious teenagers vandalizing their fields. "Aliens don't typically leave beer cans or tire tracks," said Ron Burkhart of Bucyrus, about 60 miles north of Columbus. About a dozen cases of crop circle vandalism have been reported in nearby Marion and Crawford counties. Bucyrus farmer Richard Grau said he's never seen more widespread...
  • EPA plans to phase out use of common pesticide on fruit, other crops

    06/13/2006 3:32:57 AM PDT · by prisoner6 · 15 replies · 412+ views
    AP, associated press, pennlive ^ | 06/12/2006 | GENE JOHNSON
    EPA plans to phase out use of common pesticide on fruit, other crops 6/12/2006, 9:51 p.m. ET By GENE JOHNSON The Associated Press SEATTLE (AP) — The federal government plans to phase out a common pesticide that has been used on apples, pears and other crops since the late 1950s, acting amid complaints from environmental groups that the chemical poisons farmworkers. The Environmental Protection Agency announced Friday that it would end the use of azinphos-methyl beginning next year on nuts, nursery stocks and Brussels sprouts. The pesticide, also called AZM, would be banned on apples, blueberries, cherries, pears and parsley...
  • Aerial Spraying to Save Iraq's Wheat, Date Crops Concludes

    05/29/2006 11:52:35 AM PDT · by SandRat · 4 replies · 267+ views
    TIKRIT, Iraq, May 29, 2006 – Operation Barnstormer, part of the Iraqi Agriculture Ministry's program to protect key staple crops from insect damage, wrapped up yesterday with a final day of aerial spraying in the northern Iraqi province of Dahuk, Task Force Band of Brothers officials reported. Flying low to the ground, an airplane sprays pesticide on wheat crops in the northern Iraqi province of Dahuk. The spraying was part of the Ministry of Agriculture's Operation Barnstormer. U.S. Army photo   The operation began May 16 and covered most of the major agricultural areas in the Iraqi provinces of Karbala,...
  • US Crops Left To Rot As Mexicans Leave The Fields For Better-Paid Jobs

    02/03/2006 7:42:50 PM PST · by blam · 180 replies · 2,748+ views
    The Guardian (UK) ^ | 2-4-2006 | Dan Glasiter
    US crops left to rot as Mexicans leave the fields for better-paid jobs Low pay, harsh conditions and security checks force immigrant workers into other sectors Dan Glaister in Calexico Saturday February 4, 2006 The Guardian (UK) Standing in the early morning darkness just 50 metres inside the United States, Roberto Camacho is doing his best to ward off the cold. Dressed in a black bomber jacket with a baseball cap pulled low over his brow, he shuffles from foot to foot as he waits for a lift to work. After 15 years working in the fields of California for...
  • Zimbabwe Crops Fail Despite Good Rain

    01/31/2006 6:07:14 PM PST · by blam · 24 replies · 806+ views
    The Telegraph (UK) ^ | 2-1-2006 | Peta Thornycroft
    Zimbabwe crops fail despite good rain By Peta Thornycroft in Harare (Filed: 01/02/2006) Food crops in Zimbabwe have failed again despite ample rainfall. Zimbabwe is expected this year to grow less than half of what it needs to feed the population and the rains have denied President Robert Mugabe his standard explanation of poor weather for slumping production. Foreign exchange-earning crops, such as tobacco, flowers and coffee, are now almost too small to count. More than 20 million acres of Zimbabwe's well-developed agricultural land has been confiscated from about 4,000 experienced white farmers since 2000 and handed to Mr Mugabe's...
  • Against the Grain

    01/04/2006 5:45:31 AM PST · by Brilliant · 5 replies · 254+ views
    WSJ ^ | January 4, 2006 | CHRISTIAN VERSCHUEREN
    This month will be important for the future of agricultural biotechnology in Europe. A World Trade Organization panel is expected to deliver in the next few days its long-awaited verdict on a trade dispute brought by a coalition of countries, including the U.S., Canada and Argentina, against the EU over its continued resistance to the authorization of genetically modified seeds. And while that decision -- whichever way it goes -- will have far-reaching implications for the future of agricultural biotechnology on the Continent, when seen in the context of the global biotech landscape, Europe's continued ambivalence toward this technology seems...
  • Ragu plant closing; 124 jobs lost

    12/10/2005 9:17:15 AM PST · by Willie Green · 51 replies · 2,239+ views
    The Merced Sun-Star ^ | December 9, 2005 | Leslie Albrecht
    For education and discussion only. Not for commercial use.Unilever will move work to its facility in Stockton The Unilever tomato processing plant on Ashby Road in Merced will close its doors next summer, leaving more than 100 employees without jobs. The plant, which has manufactured tomato paste and Ragu and Bertolli sauces since 1974, will stop production by June 30, 2006, according to the Netherlands-based corporation. The plant employs 124 full-time workers and 228 seasonal employees during the summer harvest season. "We will do everything we can to place them with other Unilever sites," Operations Manager Larry Pitts said. Unilever...
  • It's harvest time in the Central Valley, but where are the farmworkers?

    09/18/2005 2:03:43 PM PDT · by Cincinatus' Wife · 101 replies · 2,250+ views
    San Francisco Chronicle ^ | September 18, 2005 | George Raine, Chronicle Staff Writer
    It's the middle of harvest season for California raisin grapes, and only half of the farmworkers needed are in the fields. What holds for raisin grapes is happening widely in California agriculture. In the Central Valley alone, there is a shortage of from 70,000 to 80,000 workers to bring fresh fruits, nuts and vegetables to market, according to an estimate by the trade association Western Growers. Some growers are planting fewer acres than normal as they scramble to save the season. Western Growers is worried that the lack of workers -- mostly immigrants from Mexico and Central America -- could...
  • France faces drought, locusts (insecticides that may work are BANNED)

    07/17/2005 11:43:26 PM PDT · by FairOpinion · 13 replies · 793+ views
    Washington Times ^ | July 17, 2005 | UPI
    On top of a severe drought, France is fighting a plague of hundreds of thousands of locusts. The locusts are devouring everything from crops to window-box flowers, reported the Observer. The French environment ministry said drought could be felt across most of France, but it mostly impacted from the Atlantic Ocean to Paris. "There is nothing we can do for the 700 or 800 farmers affected," said Patrice Lemoux, an agriculture official. "The locust has no known predator and the only insecticides which might make a difference are banned."