Farmers’ sentiment rebounds from low, but worries persist

Large American farms are more confident of weathering the coronarvirus pandemic but nearly two-thirds of them say Congress should provide more assistance beyond the $16 billion already earmarked for agriculture, said Purdue University on Tuesday. Some 27 percent of producers surveyed for Purdue's monthly Ag Economy Barometer said they were "very worried" about the impact of the virus on their farm's profitability. (No paywall)

Organic industry backs immigration reform, covid-19 protection for farmworkers

The Organic Trade Association on Tuesday called for congressional action on two tracks to help farmworkers. The group seeks passage of an immigration reform law that would give legal status to undocumented farmworkers, and assistance in providing protective equipment to reduce the risk of infection by the coronavirus.

Coronavirus slowed U.S. exports of beef and pork in May

Beef exports were the smallest in 10 years during May and pork exports were the lowest in seven months, "due in part to interruptions in slaughter and processing," said the U.S. Meat Export Federation. Chief executive Dan Halstrom said the global economic slowdown and stay-at-home orders in some Western Hemisphere nations also were factors. (No paywall)

Today’s quick hits, July 8, 2020

June was warmest ever for world: Unusually hot weather in Siberia helped make last month the hottest June worldwide on record, tieing the mark set in June 2019 of temperatures 0.53 degrees C (0.95 F) above the 1980-2010 mean. (Washington Post) Treatment for citrus-greening disease: A naturally …

As Covid-19 cases spike, an unprecedented alliance races to protect California farmworkers

An outbreak of the novel coronavirus among farmworkers in California's Salinas Valley spawned a coalition of former adversaries that is racing to safeguard both the workers and the farms where they work, as Liza Gross reports in FERN's latest story, published with Univision.(No paywall)

Three Farm Belt states get a quarter of coronavirus relief money

Iowa, Nebraska and Wisconsin, strung across the Farm Belt from the Great Lakes to the Great Plains, have collected one-fourth of USDA’s coronavirus relief payments, said a weekly update on Monday. Some $5.36 billion has been disbursed, at an average $14,684 per producer, from the $16 …

House panel votes to block two Trump rules restricting SNAP access

The Trump administration would be barred from implementing two rules that would end SNAP benefits for an estimated 700,000 people during the coronavirus pandemic under a USDA-FDA funding bill approved by a Democratic-controlled House subcommittee on Monday. The provisions on SNAP rules may be …

Today’s quick hits, July 7, 2020

High food insecurity in Black, Hispanic households with children: Nearly four of every 10 Black and Hispanic households with children “are struggling to feed their families during the coronavirus pandemic,” twice the rate for white households with children and a wide racial gap that …

Pandemic rages, but USDA’s food box program may end in eight weeks

As it announced contracts for up to $1.47 billion to carry the Farmers to Families Food Box initiative through July and August, the USDA also said the program could end on Sept. 1, or soon afterward, as funding for the food giveaway program runs out. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue has highlighted the Food Box as a boon to hungry Americans during the coronavirus pandemic, while the White House opposed a temporary expansion of food-stamp benefits.(No paywall)