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Agriculture

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  • BEIJING, March 23- China will no longer chase bumper grain harvests and instead make safer foods a priority and boost imports as it bids to tackle its rural environmental problems, government officials said. He said China had recently published its sustainable development plan for agriculture, which will cap water use as well as reduce the use of chemical...

  • BOGOTA, Colombia— The new labeling of the world's most-popular weed killer as a likely cause of cancer is raising more questions for an aerial spraying program in Colombia that is the cornerstone of the U.S.-backed war on drugs. The International Agency for Research on Cancer, a French-based research arm of the World Health Organization, has reclassified the...

  • The WHO's cancer arm, the International Agency for Research on Cancer, said glyphosate, the active ingredient in the Monsanto Co herbicide Roundup, was "classified as probably carcinogenic to humans." Monsanto, the world's largest seed company, said scientific data do not support the conclusions and called on the WHO to hold an urgent meeting to explain the...

  • FDA OKs genetically altered potatoes, apples Friday, 20 Mar 2015 | 6:51 PM ET
    A conventional apple variety, left, and Okanagan Specialty Fruits’ Arctic apple variety that resists browning.

    The FDA said genetically altered apples and potatoes were as safe as their conventional counterparts, The New York Times reports.

  • PORTLAND, Maine— The health of the Atlantic herring— a little forage fish that lives in massive schools that can number in the billions— is critical to the future of the New England fishing industry, and new steps need to be taken to ensure the strength of the fishery, regulators said. The New England Fisheries Management Council is working on an amendment to the...

  • Why pot entrepreneurs are moving to Canada Friday, 20 Mar 2015 | 11:40 AM ET
    A worker at Privateer Holdings facility on Vancouver Island, Canada.

    In Canada, marijuana business owners can put their cash into a bank account instead of a vault, and they wear "clean suits" in growing facilities.

  • BOISE, Idaho— Potatoes that won't bruise and apples that won't brown are a step closer to grocery store aisles. The Food and Drug Administration on Friday approved the genetically engineered foods, saying they are "as safe and nutritious as their conventional counterparts." The approval covers six varieties of potatoes by Boise, Idaho- based J. R. Simplot Co. and two...

  • Grain higher, livestock mixed Friday, 20 Mar 2015 | 10:56 AM ET

    CHICAGO— Grain futures were higher Friday in early trading on the Chicago Board of Trade. Wheat for May delivery was unchanged at $5.12 a bushel; May corn was 4.5 cents higher at $3.78 a bushel; May oats were unchanged at $2.73 a bushel; while May soybeans surged 16.25 cents to $9.78 a bushel. June live cattle fell. 12 cent to $1.5010 a pound; May feeder cattle was. 08 cent...

  • BUENOS AIRES, March 20- Argentine farmers have stockpiled more than twice as much soy this year than last, defying a government desperate to increase export tax revenue needed to finance rising state spending ahead of the October presidential election. Growers say the increase in soybean reserves, to 7.4 million tonnes from 3.4 million, comes from a 12- percent...

  • Fresno County is expected to receive $12.1 million of the U.S. Department of Agriculture grant. California is one of 10 states chosen for the $200 million program that will test a variety of approaches to help people become self-sufficient through employment. That is too often a choice parents have to make, said Jesus Mendoza, regional administrator of the...

  • KINGSTON, Jamaica— Jamaica has imposed import restrictions on poultry products from various spots in North America in the wake of a big outbreak of bird flu that has infected stocks. The island's agriculture ministry says fresh and frozen poultry, hatching eggs and various by-products from U.S. states including Kansas, Minnesota and Missouri are restricted...

  • CA leaders propose $1B drought relief package Thursday, 19 Mar 2015 | 3:43 PM ET
    Jerry Brown, governor of California

    More than 90 percent of California is currently battling severe drought conditions.

  • CHICAGO, March 19- Planting is expected to start early in the northern U.S. "I would expect planting to go a little better in the upper Midwest this spring than it will in the Ohio River Valley," Brad Rippey, a meteorologist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, told reporters at a spring outlook presentation. In the southern Midwest, including the southern tips of...

  • Grain mixed, livestock mixed Thursday, 19 Mar 2015 | 10:52 AM ET

    CHICAGO— Grain futures were mixed Thursday in early trading on the Chicago Board of Trade. Wheat for May delivery was unchanged at $5.1075 a bushel; May corn was 2 cents lower at $3.7275 a bushel; May oats were unchanged at $2.7325 a bushel; while May soybeans lost a penny to $9.64 a bushel. June live cattle rose. 63 cent to $1.4910 a pound; May feeder cattle was. 33 cent...

  • *China to buy more high-protein wheat to meet shortage- traders. China bought around 300,000 tonnes of high protein milling wheat from Canada and about 150,000 tonnes from Australia, with shipment from May 2015, according to traders in Europe. The price gap has expanded, encouraging mills and state-trading houses to import, "said an industry source with an...

  • MEXICO CITY— Police arrested more than 200 people in the Mexican border state of Baja California in a bid to quash protests and road blockages by farmworkers demanding higher wages, officials said Wednesday. Farmworkers around the town of San Quintin often make less than $8 a day picking fruit and vegetables. Many of the large farms export much of their produce...

  • The 'sweet spot' that New Zealand is aiming for   Wednesday, 18 Mar 2015 | 8:42 PM ET
    The 'sweet spot' that New Zealand is aiming for

    Bill English, deputy prime minister & finance minister of New Zealand, says the country wants "sustained, moderate growth" of 3 percent over the next 2-3 years, but warns of risks from China and Australia.

  • NEW YORK— Monsanto said Wednesday it will pay about $350,000 to settle class action lawsuits brought by farmers in seven states over genetically modified wheat. The St. Louis company said Wednesday it will make donations of $50,000 to agricultural schools at land grant colleges in Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Oklahoma, Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi.

  • WASHINGTON, March 18- The United States and New Zealand on Wednesday challenged Indonesia's import restrictions on food and other farm products, saying barriers to goods ranging from potatoes to poultry breached international trade obligations. "I'm proud to take this action today standing up on behalf of farmers and ranchers across the United States who...

  • SANTIAGO/ WINNIPEG, March 18- Shares in Chilean fertilizer group SQM plunged on Wednesday after three board representatives from Canada's Potash Corp resigned in protest at its handling of an illicit payments scandal that has shaken the Chilean establishment. SQM Vice Chairman Wayne Brownlee, who is also chief financial officer of Potash Corp, and two...