Today’s quick hits, April 22, 2019

Compromise on disaster aid? (AFBF): Dozens of groups representing farmers and lenders asked congressional leaders in a letter to “make the compromises necessary to find a path forward to approve critically needed disaster relief, without further delay, and as soon as Congress returns from its two-week recess.” Action has been delayed for weeks in a fight over aid to Puerto Rico.

Rural population rises for second year (Carsey School): In a reversal of the losses of 2011-16, the rural population crept upward in 2018 for the second consecutive year with a gain of 37,000 people; the gains were in rural counties adjacent to metro areas while farming counties continued to lose residents.

If it’s published, it’s ‘preliminary’ (Washington Post): Publication of a scientific paper in a peer-reviewed journal is typically the endpoint for a research project. But a new USDA policy says the papers must carry the disclaimer that the findings are “preliminary,” “have not been formally disseminated” and are not official policy. Critics say the phrasing puts the validity of the research in question.

Glyphosate, here to stay (AgriCensus): There is no readily available alternative to glyphosate, the weedkiller used on GMO field crops. So the herbicide is likely to remain in widespread use despite two adverse jury verdicts in the U.S. and an EU license review set to begin in December, said a group of analysts and consultants.