Monday, October 22, 2018

Members in the News: Bellemare, Offutt, Sonka, Coble, and Popp

Marc F. Bellemare, University of Minnesota
Is Your Salad Habit Good for the Planet?
By: The New York Times - September 29, 2018
Moreover, “most waste occurs at the consumer level,” said Marc Bellemare, who directs the Center for International Food and Agricultural Policy at the University of Minnesota. “Restaurants and grocery stores don’t waste as much as consumers do.” He added, “most of what gets wasted is not frozen pizza, it’s not ice cream, it’s produce, it’s stuff that goes in salad. I suspect that the rise of those restaurants, my intuition is that those will mean the rise of food waste as well, because they sell this stuff to consumers, where the bulk of the losses tend to occur.”
Read more on: The New York Times

Sunsan Offutt, FAO
Opinion: Fargo or Kansas City could “win” the USDA economic research agency but the country will lose
Written by Susan Offutt: AgriPulse - October 7, 2018
Today, the USDA will receive the last expressions of interests from states hoping to become the new home for the Economic Research Service, currently located in Washington, DC. The process however should be halted pending an independent assessment of the rationale for and the potential consequences of realignment and relocation of ERS. Too much is at stake for the US agriculture, food, and rural economy to take the drastic actions the USDA proposes without such an assessment.
The 330 employees of the Economic Research Service produce analyses and data relating to farming and the food supply, natural resources, rural economies, farm income, trade, and nutrition. Their work is of such quality that the Economic Research Service is ranked No. 3 in the world for agricultural economics. Economic Research Service reports are used by, and their experts consulted by, Congress, other parts of USDA, reporters, and public and private-sector policymakers throughout the food, agriculture and rural economies. Given their central importance to informing evidence-based policy making in our $1 trillion dollar food and agricultural sector, their $86 million dollar annual budget is taxpayer money well spent.
Read more on: AgriPulse

Steve Sonka, University of Maryland
To Reduce Post-harvest Loss, Start with a Sustaining End in Mind
Written by Steve Sonka, Rajshree Agarwal, and Sonali K. Shah: PYXERA Global - October 9, 2018
What does success look like? For farmers, a successful season should look like a bountiful harvest translated into a bountiful profit.
Visiting with a rice farmer in Bihar state in India at the end of harvest, it was easy to see that it had been a good year for rice. Awaiting threshing, bundles of rice were organized into stacks twice as tall as the farmer with the length and width of a small building. The farmer was pleased that yields had been good. However, the farmer knew that success had yet to be achieved.
Read more on: PYXERA Global

Keith Coble, Mississippi State University
Fed interest rate hike adds to production costs
By: Delta Farm Press - October 8, 2018
“It’s hard to estimate the magnitude of the latest increase on farm budgets,” says Keith Coble, department head, Mississippi State University agricultural economics at Starkville.
“The effect on individual farmers will depend on the amount they borrow, but most farmers will do some borrowing, making things that much tighter.”
The interest rate increase also “is one more thing to make bankers more nervous,” Coble adds. And they have been nervous enough already, “especially with the trade situation and low prices. Those factors are weighing heavily on the agriculture economy.”
Read more on: Delta Farm Press

Jennie Popp, University of Arkansas
U of A project to help farmers recycle water, recover nutrients for fertilizer
By: The Pine Bluff Commercial - October 18, 2018
University of Arkansas chemical engineering faculty are leading efforts to develop systems to help farmers recycle water and recover nutrients that can be used as fertilizer. The research is being funded with a new $4.3 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture, according to a news release.
Agriculture accounts for more than three-fourths of all water consumption in the United States, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Read more on: The Pine Bluff Commercial

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*Articles in response to the AAEA Communicating Out Strategy Press Releases highlighting: Government Relations, American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Applied Economic Perspectives & Policy, Choices Magazine, General Media, and/or 2018 AAEA Annual Meeting in Washington D.C.

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