1. House defeats the Farm Bill. To the dismay of some and delight of others, the House Thursday defeated the Farm Bill with a vote of 195-234. In two days of voting and discussion, clear disagreement surfaced regarding the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, crop insurance and dairy reform.
2. It was a big week for biotech. The World Food Prize Wednesday named three biotechnology scientists – Marc Van Montagu of Belgium, and Mary-Dell Chilton and Robert T. Fraley of the United States – as the 2013 World Food Prize Laureates, largely based on their unique contributions to genetically engineered crops.
3. National Pollinator Week wraps up Sunday. Designated National Pollinator Week by the USDA and the Department of the Interior, this week marked a time for agriculturalists, gardeners and food lovers to unite in support of the Pollinator. Want to learn more? Check out NRCS' list of 10 Things You Should Know About Pollinators.
4. Food experts weigh in on transparency in ag. During this week's Food Dialogues, held in Chicago and sponsored by the U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance, expert panelists tackled the topic of food labeling and transparency in food production. Check out a recap of the events from Prairie Farmer's Holly Spangler here and here.
5. Australian livestock industry under siege. Livestock producers in Australia are dealing with a new competitor – the wild dog. And farmers are working to find a fix to the issue, but this new form of dog operates in a much different way than previous predators.
6. Our favorite veterinarian is retiring his pen. Our "good doctor" Steve McDonald at Beef Producer, who often imparts wise advice and a good laugh, is retiring from his column. We wish him well, and remind folks that if you haven't checked out his blog, Animal Health Notebook, now is a good time.
7. TTIP negotiations official. The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative this week announced that negotiations with the European Union on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership agreement would begin in July. Farm groups are mostly optimistic – that is, if phyto-sanitary and sanitary issues are resolved.
And your bonus:
Ah, the life of a livestock show mom. Mindy Ward, Missouri Ruralist editor, says in the world of "everyone is a winner," the show ring offers the best place to teach kids that there are winners and losers in the game of life.
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