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AFFI backs congressional action on Renewable Fuel Standard
The American Frozen Food Institute has requested that Congress reform the Renewable Fuel Standard, cautioning that without action, food manufacturers will have to deal with further cost increases and consumers will pay more for food.
Food giants discuss lobbying for national label program
New York Times News Service via AgWeek
Executives from PepsiCo, ConAgra and about 20 other major food companies, as well as Wal-Mart and advocacy groups that favor labeling, attended a meeting in January convened by the Meridian Institute, which organizes discussions of major issues. On the docket: a national standard for GMO labeling.
Hawaii House to decide on GMO labeling today (Maui TV News)
Connecticut groups lobby for GMO labels (The Associated Press via Connecticut Post)
Missouri bill would require labeling for GM meat, fish (KOZL-TV)
Supermarkets cry foul at FDA's proposed food labeling rule
Supermarket owners argue a pending federal food labeling rule that stems from the new health care law would overburden thousands of grocers and convenience store owners — to the tune of $1 billion in the first year alone.
Report: Obama will fundraise aggressively for congressional Democrats
President Barack Obama will appear at more than a dozen fundraising events for the Democratic Party committees over the next year as part of what a White House official called an "aggressive schedule."
Opinion: Why conservatives should back immigration reform
Al Cardenas, chair of the American Conservative Union, says the future of our national security, economy and children depends on immigration reform.
Broun enters 2014 senate race in Georgia
The Wall Street Journal
When two-term Sen. Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., announced late last month that he won't seek re-election in 2014, Republican politicians began jockeying for position in the race to replace him. Rep. Paul Broun, 66 years old, a conservative from northeast Georgia, is the first to officially announce his candidacy.
Commentary: Are kids going to eat less junk at school?
The Huffington Post
Last Friday, the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced new proposed standards for snacks sold at schools. Perhaps anticipating the backlash, the proposal exempts fundraisers, after-school sports events and treats sent by parents, including birthday and holiday party goodies. It also allows for a yearlong transition. But is it going to make a difference?
Schools grab millions of dollars from poorest students' food funds (Capitol Weekly)
FAO: World food prices stable in January after three months of falls
World food prices stabilized in January after falling in the previous three months as a rebound in oil prices offset declines in cereals and sugar, the United Nations' food agency said Thursday.
Slaughter on NARMS: 'Standing on brink of public health catastrophe'
Food Safety News
Rep. Louise Slaughter, D-N.Y., reacted to the National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System report this week, calling the increases in certain types of drug resistance among bacteria found on retail meat and ground poultry "alarming."
Cambridge to 'move slowly' on soda size ban
GateHouse News Service via Wicked Local Cambridge
City officials in Cambridge, Mass., plan to "move slowly" on a proposed limit to the size of sodas served at restaurants and other eateries, opting instead to look at a similar ban on sugar-sweetened drinks moving its way through the local government in New York City.
Business groups ask court to block ban on large sugary drinks (New York Business Journal)
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New Russia, Japan meat trade policies highlight food safety issues
International Center for Trade and Sustainable Development
Trade restrictions over food safety concerns were in the spotlight this past week, as Russia announced it is banning imports of U.S. beef, pork and turkey due to questions over the use of ractopamine. Meanwhile, Japan has lifted various longstanding bans on beef imports from the U.S., Canada and the EU, which had been been put in place over fears of mad cow disease.
Canada: Food companies raise a stink over 'odor fee'
The Vancouver Sun
As Metro Vancouver tries to woo composting companies to deal with an increasing mound of kitchen scraps, food producers are raising a stink over plans to charge them an "odor fee."
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Poll: Americans expect economic pain to continue
The Washington Post
Americans remain deeply pessimistic about the nation's economic future nearly four years into the recovery, and the vast majority think it will take "many years" for things to return to the way they were before the downturn, according to a poll released Thursday.
Retailers report strong January results in wake of clearance sales
The Associated Press via The Washington Post
Major retailers are reporting strong sales in January as shoppers went back to the stores after the winter holidays to take advantage of clearance sales. Twenty retailers reported Thursday that revenue at stores open at least a year rose an average of 5.1 percent, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers.
Navigating the future of food
Fresh juices and foods subjected to high pressure processing, protein (especially at breakfast), cage-free hen eggs, premium private label, fermented foods, culinary botanicals and edible packaging could all be hot trends this year, predicts trend watcher Hartman Group.
Report: Nanoparticles pervade the food chain; is it safe?
The New York Times
Nanomaterials, substances broken down by technology into molecule-size particles, are starting to enter the food chain through well-known food products and their packaging, but there is little acknowledgment by the companies using them, according to a new report from As You Sow, a nonprofit group that works to enhance corporate accountability.
LeafyGreens.com website aims to ease FSMA compliance
LeafyGreens.com, a consortium of leading legal, technical and PR firms serving the agriculture and food industry, is today launching a new food safety website, www.LeafyGreens.com, as a resource for farmers, packers, managers and other industry members working to understand and comply with rapidly changing state and federal regulations on the handling and packing of produce in the United States.
Mintel: Consumers cut back on meat for health reasons
For Americans reducing the amount of red meat they eat, health concerns are playing a larger role in the decision than price, according to a new survey of consumers.
E. coli O26 clone spreading throughout Europe
Food Safety News
A highly virulent clone of Enter hemorrhagic E. coli O26 has emerged in Europe, according to new research published in Clinical Infectious Diseases.
UK: Supermarket culture 'fails' frozen food manufacturers
Brian Young, director general of the British Frozen Food Federation, said the big four supermarkets in the U.K. are letting down manufacturers and ignoring consumer trends by failing to adequately display or provide enough space for frozen foods.
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