SENATE FARM BILL:
Good morning I’m Clinton Griffiths. The Senate spent yesterday debating amendments to its version of the Farm Bill. Members say they expect a vote could happen later today.
RON KIRK RUSSIA:
US Trade Representative Ron Kirk is urging Congress to grant Russia permanent normal trade status. He says the measure should be approved without tying it to other legislation.
The AG industry has a close eye on what's turning out to be another volatile weather situation this summer. Mike Hoffman has details in this morning's crop watch.
NATIONAL BEEF FINE:
In our Beef Today report, Kansas City based National Beef has fines to pay. The packing company was fined more than 32 thousand dollars by the USDA's Gipsa Arm. The feds say the company was giving wrong information to livestock sellers, made mistakes on freight charges and used an inaccurate scale to get carcass weights. National Beef calls the incidents isolated. It says its paid back cattle suppliers and put checks in place to prevent the issue in the future.
On down the food chain, feed lots continue to struggle. High priced calves, high feed costs and falling demand are squeezing the industry. Market watchers say don't expect things to get much better in the near future.
GROUND BEEF PRICES:
Feedlots aren't the only one's paying high prices. Consumers are now shelling out $3 a pound for ground beef. That's a new nationwide record. Three reasons are behind the jump. Fewer cattle, higher exports, and less supply especially after many companies moved away from lean finely textured beef trimmings.
Raising cattle in the subtropical climate of Louisiana can present some challenges.
LSU AGcenter correspondent Craig Gautreaux reports on research helping improve the quality of herds in the region.
The popularity of Farmers' Markets has been on the rise in the past decade. Missouri is no different. The Missouri Department of AG says they've seen a 55% jump in these markets across the state. Agday's Tyne Morgan shows us one market that's in a unique spot to cash in on the growing appetite for buying local.
ORGANIC AUTHORITY BILL:
How do you know that the USDA certified organic sticker on fresh produce is accurate? New legislation has been proposed in the US House of Representatives to ensure organically labeled items meet organic standards.
Meanwhile a new study shows fewer people are buying fresh produce because of the fear of pesticides. The Alliance for Food and Farming, which is a nonprofit group representing both organic and conventional farmers, found 60% of consumers are highly concerned about pesticide residues on produce. To help ease concerns, the alliance has created a new pesticide calculation tool to see how many servings an adult or child can consume without any adverse effects from pesticide residues. You can view the tool by visiting Safefruitsandveggies.com.