News items related to ag tech, biotech, trade – and perhaps some other interesting items out there related to agriculture – will be posted on this page throughout the week (as the week progresses new items will be in green at bottom of sections).  Be sure to check in regularly!

_____

Editorial comment: Anyone find irony in all the recent concern from the media and others over trade, trade deals and anything trade related?  The concern seems to have materialized virtually overnight – or at least since when the transition from President Obama to President Trump.   Where was all this support for trade over the past few years when much work towards TPP and TTIP was being done?  Many have done a virtual about face, and gone from being unsupportive of trade deals, to all of a sudden being concerned and opining about the potential impact on consumers paying more for goods and perceptions of American leadership.  The current landscape is still taking shape and there will likely be some fluidity over the coming months – but, as the first two news items below indicate, there are conflicting views and perspectives from knowledgeable people…

TRADE, TRADE RELATED ISSUES:

There probably won’t be a trade war – The Australian Business Review – By Alan Kohler (Jan 30)

“But what’s usually missed, or ignored, about President Trump’s January 23 memorandum pulling the US out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership is that it was a surgical withdrawal from one deal only, and that Trump used it to make a generally pro-trade statement.” – Link to news item here

Trump’s Trade War May Have Already Begun – The New York Times – By Peter S. Goodman (Jan 30)

“In Asia and Latin America, leaders have absorbed the deepening possibility that Mr. Trump will deliver on threats to impose punitive tariffs on Mexican and Chinese imports…” – Link to news item here

Germany urges EU to speed trade deals after Trump, Brexit – Reuters – By Tom Körkemeier (Jan 27)

Link to news item here

US dairy groups ask Canada to ‘hold up its end of the bargain’ in trade agreements – Food Navigator USA – By Mary Ellen Shoup (Jan 31)

“The US dairy industry is continuing its fight against Canada’s policies, which they say are blocking American dairy imports into the country in violation of international agreements.” – Link to news item here

Renegotiating NAFTA provides an opportunity to make needed reforms – The Hill – By Jon Barela (Feb 1)

Link to news item here

AG, AG TECH, PRODUCTION, RELATED ISSUES:

USDA sends out $13.6 million more to fight citrus greening scourge – Southeast Farm Press (Jan 26)

“”The economic impact of citrus greening disease is measured in the billions…” – Link to news item here

Make tomatoes tasty again: Scientists discover ‘flavour genes’ in the world’s most valuable fruit – Food Navigator – By Louis Gore-Langton (Jan 27)

“Mass produced commercial tomatoes contain increasingly less flavour and return increasingly less consumer satisfaction. A team of researchers has discovered a ‘genetic roadmap’ for rebreeding tastiness into tomatoes” – Link to news item here

Why microbes are key to solving Africa’s food security crisis – The Conversation – By Esther Ndumi Ngumbi (Jan 30)

Link to news item here

You’d Look Good in Designer Genes – Wall Street Journal – By Henry I. Miller (Jan 31)

“Genetic engineering will soon make commercial bluejean production cheaper than ever.” – Link to news item here

New ‘super yield’ GM wheat trial gets go-ahead – BBC – By Matt McGrath (Feb 1)

Link to news item here

POLICY, REGULATORY, ACTIVISM, OTHER:

Fined for Planting GMO Seeds in a Country That’s a Global Power – Bloomberg – By Eduardo Thomson (Jan 27)

“For years, Chile has had a curious double standard when it comes to genetically modified organisms. The country is a global powerhouse in the production of GM seeds — but makes them strictly off-limits to domestic farmers.” – Link to news item here

Post-Truth Science – National Review – By Joseph Perrone (Jan 25)

“Attempts to discredit genetically modified crops and the herbicide glyphosate have no scientific basis.” – Link to news item here

Was 2016 Really A Good Year For Agricultural Biotechnology? – Forbes.com – By Wayne Parrot and Val Giddings (Jan 25)

“…food industry actions continue to complicate and negate the work of communicators, health professionals, journalists and educators.” – Link to news item here 

California gets closer to requiring cancer warning label on Roundup weed killer – Los Angles Times / AP (Jan 27)

Link to news item here