READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Tuesday, July 19th…

CLICK HERE to listen to TODAY's BARN Morning Ag News with Brian Allmer...

CLICK HERE to listen to TODAY’s BARN Morning Ag News with Brian Allmer…

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Ag Secretary Vilsack is a Potential VP Candidate

Several recent media reports said USDA Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack is among a handful of candidates being considered as a potential nominee for Vice President and running mate for Hillary Clinton on the Democratic ticket. During an interview on NBC, Vilsack said, “Trump is to politics what Bernie Madoff was to investment. He’s selling something the public doesn’t fully appreciate and understand.” Politico Reports the biggest shortcoming for the former Iowa Governor as a candidate might be a lack of foreign policy experience. His response was, “Here’s what I know about foreign policy:  The United States must be at the center of every problem globally. We must lead. I understand that.” Vilsack told NBC he’s happy to talk about all aspects of government. In his words, he told NBC to “bring it on.” 


Ag Groups Fear Anti-trade Talk at RNC

Farmers and agriculture groups all fear anti-trade talk at this week’s Republican National Convention in Cleveland. They are also are looking for the presumptive nominee to keep pushing for reform of the regulatory agenda in D.C. Donald Trump has come out against the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the North American Free Trade Agreement, and threatened to impose high tariffs on China. Agri-Pulse said that’s alarming to the agriculture industry, but Trump’s selection of Indiana Governor Mike Pence has brought some optimism back into the Ag sector. Pence is an outspoken supporter of the TPP and the other trade deals. House Ag Committee Chair Mike Conaway has offered to advise the Trump Campaign on farm policy, but they haven’t responded.  Conaway will be joined by Senate Agriculture Committee Chair Pat Roberts at the Great American Farm Luncheon on Wednesday. It’s an event organized by agribusiness interests at the Republican National Convention. Roberts hopes that Trump will keep up his criticism of President Obama on regulations, saying “our candidate has hit that one out of the park.”


Turkey Situation Causes Global Shipping Concerns

The Bosphorus Strait in Turkey connects the Black Sea to the Mediterranean and it was closed over the weekend during the coup attempt in Turkey.  More than three percent of the world’s oil supplies pass through that channel and large amounts of grain from Russia, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine also navigate the channel. Reuters says over one-quarter of the world’s grain supplies are shipped from ports on the Black Sea. 48,000 vessels move through the Strait, making it one of the busiest transit points on the planet, according to Pro Farmer. Ships are granted free passage, but Turkey does occasionally assert its rights to control the channel. Russia’s Ag Minister said they hope Saturday’s closure of the Strait won’t impact their grain exports.


Study Links Replacing Red Meat to Lower Kidney Failure Risk

A study conducted by researchers in Singapore found that replacing red meat in a person’s diet is linked to a lower risk of kidney failure. The risk of developing end-stage renal disease is lowered by 62 percent. End stage renal disease requires dialysis or a kidney transplant. The reearch says the reduction in risk is associated with people replacing one serving of red meat with other sources of protein, like fish and poultry.  A professor associated with the study says it’s not necessary to skip red meat entirely. Rather, he says it’s advisable for people to replace it with protein from poultry, fish, or plant-based proteins like soy and legumes, every other day. The study was based on over 600,000 Chinese adults in Singapore and conducted over 15 years, according to Meatingplace. In the study, 97 percent of the red meat intake was pork. There was no link found between kidney failure and eating poultry, fish, eggs, or dairy products.


Organic Food Buying Continues to Grow

Organic food sales in the U.S. were estimated at $37 billion dollars last year. The Nutrition Business Journal says organic sales accounted for five percent of overall food sales in the country. This increase comes as USDA reports the number of certified organic operations in America increased 12 percent to 21,000. Fresh fruits and vegetables are the top-selling category, followed by dairy products. Most of those fruits and vegetables don’t travel far before they’re sold. The first point of sale for 80 percent of those products less than 500 miles from the farms. The top ten states for sales in 2014 accounted for 78 percent of products bought, and California led the list at number one. A seperate survey also found that almost 700 farms with no current organic production are transitioning into full-time organic production. 


Farm Credit Service Turns 100

 Farm Credit Service celebrated it’s 100th anniversary Sunday. President Obama, the House and Senate, and Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack all recognized the milestone. The President said, “FCS plays an integral role in economies across the country.” Secretary Vilsack attended the Farm Credit 100 luncheon on July 16. The event celebrated the anniversary milestone as well as winners in Farm Credit’s Fresh Perspectives Search. That program identifies prospective leaders who will shape the vision for agriculture into the next 100 years. Vilsack said, “Rural communities trust Farm Credit Services to be there in good times, but more importantly in tough times.” Todd Van Hoose, President and CEO of Farm Credit Service, said they’re grateful for the support and look forward to serving rural America for the next 100 years.

SOURCE: NAFB News Service