By Sarah Fielder
Syngenta Lawsuit Advancing The federal district judge overseeing the class action lawsuit against Syngenta for releasing the MIR162 genetic event before being approved in China ruled on several motions narrowing the issues for the bellwether trial that will begin in June. Based on the ruling, the June trial will focus solely on negligence claims under Kansas law. To read a summary of the ruling and what it means to the bellwether trial, see this summary by Kristen A. Tidgren of the Center for Agricultural Law and Taxation at Iowa State University http://bit.ly/2pyaOdJ.
Save the Date – Annual Crop Insurance Workshop The annual crop insurance workshop sponsored by AREC, University of Maryland Extension, Maryland Department of Ag, and USDA will be held on Sept. 7. Stay tuned for more details.
NC Legislature Looking at Limiting Lawsuits Against Animal Operations Farms The North Carolina Legislature is currently debating legislation that would limit lawsuits against hog and poultry operations based on smells. You can view the proposed legislation here http://bit.ly/2pf2nE2. On Sunday, two environmental groups released an interactive map showing the proximity of some houses to farms. To see the story on the map here http://bit.ly/2o1wm2f.
K-State Releases ARC County Projections for 2016 For those growers who elected the Ag Risk Coverage (ARC) County option in the 2014 Farm Bill, Robin Reid and Art Barnaby with the Kansas State University Department of Agricultural Economics have released updated projected county payments. To see the interactive map, click here http://bit.ly/2oqNtpp.
Ten Tips for a Successful Farm Succession Jennifer Blazek with the University of Wisconsin Extension has recently published 10 tips getting a farm succession right. Many of the tips may seem like common sense but are good for you to consider as many of you begin to develop farm succession plans. Take a moment to read Ms. Blazek’s 10 tips at http://bit.ly/2pfXAma.
EPA Considering Outsourcing Rule Writing? This week news reports surfaced that EPA is considering utilizing private attorneys to write the new WOTUS rule called for by President Trump. This option is highly unusually and might be legal but has raised a host of ethics questions. Click over to Politico to see the story on this proposed outsourcing, http://politi.co/2pBb2AP. EPA officials have since backed off this report and have stated the rule writing will not be outsourced. See story on Greenwire, http://bit.ly/2oq4Fwb.
Peterson Talks Farm Bill Ranking member on the House Ag Committee discussed how he would overhaul Title 1 of the Farm Bill this week. Peterson discussed how the current Agricultural Risk Coverage (ARC) County option chosen by many corn and soybean producers does not provide adequate support for an average or a below average crop. To see more of Peterson’s thoughts, check out this story in Brownfield http://bit.ly/2ooCrlu.
Dairy Farmers Follow The Money to See How Wages Impact Mexico Marketplace.org posted an interesting story this week on a group of Wisconsin dairy farmers who began hiring farm workers from Mexico in the 1990s. The story highlights some of the cultural challenges faced by both the farmers and the farm workers and solutions they utilized. One interesting highlight of the story, is the farmers began traveling to Mexico to see how the farm workers lived back home. One farmer has made trips back periodically and has seen first hand how the remittances made by the workers to family in Mexico have improved communities. Check out the story here http://bit.ly/2o5A8b4.
Neighbors and Animal Operations The state of Minnesota is facing a similar debate that other states like North Carolina are currently considering. How should right-to-farm laws protect larger animal operations? This week the Minneapolis Star Tribune highlighted this on going debate and a lawsuit between a large hog farm and its neighbors. To see more about this debate, check out http://strib.mn/2oosrsy