Today’s quick hits, Oct. 8, 2020

Nobel for CRISPR scientists: Emmanuelle Charpentier, director of the Max Planck Unit for the Science of Pathogens in Berlin, and Jennifer Doudna of the University of California were awarded the Nobel Prize for Chemistry for their discovery of “one of gene technology’s sharpest tools: the CRISP/Cas9 genetic scissors.” (Nobel Foundation)

Loeffler gets a zero on food, farm policy: Sen. Kelly Loeffler, Republican of Georgia and a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, received a rating of zero on food and farm policy issues from the progressive group Food Policy Action. Sen. Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania, also a Republican, was the only other senator with a zero. (Food Policy Action)

Trouble covering household expenses: In the Census Bureau’s latest Household Survey, one in three adults said it was somewhat or very difficult to cover such regular expenses as food, housing, car payments, medical expenses, or student loans. (Center on Budget and Policy Priorities)

Funds for distance learning, telemedicine: The USDA announced $72 million in grants to 116 projects in 40 states, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands to help healthcare and educational institutions buy equipment and software to provide distance learning and telemedicine services to 12 million rural Americans. (USDA)

Price parity in beef, plant patties: Food company Before the Butcher launched a line of frozen, plant-based patties that sell for roughly the same price as ground beef, a potential breakthrough in the competition with meat. (Food Dive)