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News for January 12, 2010

Rutgers University Seminar Series on Raw Milk 

The Raw Revolution
David Gumpert, Author Lecture & Book Signing

January 29, 2010
2:00 pm, Cook Campus, Marine Science Building, Alampi Auditorium
Rutgers University, 71 Dudley Road, New Brunswick, NJ 08901


Raw ambition: Carthage dairy avoids pasteurization process

Raw milk — that is, milk that does not go through the pasteurization process — treated properly is just as safe, if not safer, to drink than pasteurized milk.


Decision day draws near in raw milk case

Durham-area farmer Michael Schmidt says no matter what a judge decides later this month about charges against him for distributing and selling raw milk, it will be an energizing moment for both him and the food freedom movement.

"If the verdict comes down in our favour, it would be interesting because it would have great implications for the rest of Canada, how to deal with the basic issue of food freedom," Schmidt said yesterday


Raw Milk Debate Goes Before MO Milk Board

When the Missouri Milk Board met today in Jefferson City it heard from lots of farmers and other proponents of raw milk. Conway farmer Armand Bechard was one of them. He says more than 60 people who are not a part of the milk board attended the meeting.


USDA assists Afghan farmers

US agriculture secretary Tom Vilsack is planning a visit to Afghanistan as part of the USDA's efforts to ramp up development of the sector in the war-torn country.

Mr Vilsack said at a news conference on Thursday that agricultural development is the Obama administration's chief non-military goal in Afghanistan, Government reported.



WASHINGTON – Four prominent agriculture experts with Wisconsin ties have been appointed to serve on the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) new Dairy Industry Advisory Committee at the request of Senator Herb Kohl, the USDA announced today. The Committee will be tasked with reviewing the issues of farm milk price volatility and dairy farmer profitability, and providing suggestions and ideas to the Secretary of Agriculture on how USDA can best address these issues to meet the dairy industry’s needs.


USDA dairy panel drafts two from Turlock, Hilmar

Two valley residents have been appointed to agricultural and dairy posts in the Obama administration.

Turlock dairyman Manuel "Ray" Souza and Patricia Stroup of Hilmar will be among the 17 members of the newly created U.S. Department of Agriculture's Dairy Industry Advisory Committee.

Souza is the owner of Turlock's Mel-Delin Dairy and is serving his second term as president of the Modesto-based Western United Dairymen board of directors. He has testified on ag and dairy issues before Congress and served on a statewide national beef promotion and research board.


FDA’s food safety blogger doesn’t think meat safety is a problem

Michael Taylor, the FDA’s special adviser for food safety and one of the administration’s most public food safety officials, now blogs at the Atlantic. He hasn’t said much to date. But today he tried to get us all psyched for a big year for food safety:


State agency to review raw milk issue

The Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection is considering whether it can safely allow the sale of raw milk to consumers in Wisconsin.


DATCP: Nilsestuen appoints panel to consider raw milk issue

MADISON -- Sec. Rod Nilsestuen announced today that he is convening a raw milk working group to consider legal and regulatory perspectives pertaining to the sale of unpasteurized milk directly to consumers, and consider what conditions would be required to protect public health.


Lawmaker: Raw milk production could create new farmers

JEFFERSON CITY — A state representative from Jefferson County who has raised her children on raw milk thinks making the sale of unprocessed milk less burdensome could lure more young people into farming.


Gates Foundation picks new head of ag program

SEATTLE — A man who has focused much of his career on agriculture technology, including development of genetically-modified seeds, was named Friday as the new head of agriculture development for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.


Inside the FDA: Food Safety in 2010

Saying goodbye to 2009 won't be too difficult for those of us in the food safety arena. The last year illustrated that the fight against foodborne illness has not yet been won. With headline outbreaks involving Salmonella in peanut butter and alfalfa sprouts and E. coli O157:H7 in cookie dough, we still have our work cut out for us.


Food giveaway intended to improve farms' image

Washington, D.C. - Farmers hope they can improve their public image by giving away some food.

The Iowa Farm Bureau Federation and groups representing corn and hog producers in the state have joined in an effort to improve the image of agribusiness with a contest for free groceries. People who sign up at a Web site have a chance to be one of two winners in Iowa of $5,000 worth of free shopping at the supermarket of their choice.


Empty Agriculture offices, including food safety, raise concerns

Almost a full year after President Obama took office, the Agriculture Department still has vacancies in five key leadership positions, including the high-profile job of undersecretary for food safety.

Despite several outbreaks of food-borne illness in 2009 and the appointment of an interagency panel on food safety, Obama has not nominated anyone for the top food-safety position at USDA.


USDA buys Fluidigm test for cattle

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has bought a testing system from Fluidigm Corp. to help manage America's dairy and beef cattle.


How US is tackling opium trade in Afghanistan poppy heartland

Khan Neshin, Afghanistan

Standing next to his cow and a squad of Marines on patrol, Afghan farmer Fathie Mohammad says the troops have upended the local opium economy. Outsiders once flocked to Khan Neshin to work the fields, process the poppy, and smuggle it to nearby Iran and Pakistan.


Organic Alchemy Looks to Turn Waste into Energy

It's an experiment that could potentially turn cow waste into energy, and it's gaining the attention of those in the ag community and Western Kentucky University.


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