Los Angeles Times

Lunch at school with a pot-bellied pig

John Wooden High School, a so-called continuation school in the Los Angeles school system, is small, operating without a pool or a gym but it has a farm. And most days, Alex Snyder, 17, "eats lunch with a pot-bellied pig named Peanut," says the Los Angeles Times.

Big salaries but Los Angeles County Fair Assn loses money

The Los Angeles County Fair Assn formed in 1940 "to promote the region's then-booming agriculture industry," says the Los Angeles Times. "But over the years, it morphed into something resembling a conglomerate with little connection to farming or livestock. And its managers have become richly compensated even as the association loses money."

Fallow land in Palo Verde Valley helps water the city

The Palo Verde Irrigation District, headquartered in Blythe, "has become an increasingly important factor in California's struggle to overcome a four-year drought," says the Los Angeles Times.

Urban farmers save water by recycling it

Small-scale urban farmers in drought-stricken California are finding creative ways to keep plants alive without wasting water, reports the Los Angeles Times.

As California drought bill goes to Senate, the pressure is on Feinstein

On a largely party-line vote of 245-176, the U.S. House passed a Republican-backed bill “that is unlikely to break the long-standing partisan stalemate over how to fix the drought” in California, said the Los Angeles Times. “Even if the bill makes it through the Senate, where it would need …

White House threatens veto of California water bill

Ahead of a House vote scheduled for today, the White House threatened to veto a water bill backed by California Republicans, saying it overrides state water law and the Endangered Species Act, "thereby resulting in conditions that could be detrimental to the Delta fish and other species."

California considers permits for farmworkers in U.S. illegally

After waiting fruitlessly for Congress to act, "California lawmakers are considering a measure to allow work permits for farmworkers living in the country illegally," reports the Los Angeles Times.

Add a barley gene and rice emits less methane

Rice is a staple of half the world's population and also a potent emitter of greenhouse gases. But the Los Angeles Times reports that scientists say genetic engineering may help solve the grain's methane problem.

Drought disrupts wheat crop in Pacific Northwest

Long-running drought has "shrunk the kernels and disrupted the proteins of winter wheat crops" in the Pacific Northwest, which grows one-fifth of the U.S. crop, says the Seattle Times.

California proposes first fine of a senior water rights holder

The State Water Resources Board proposed a $1.5 million fine against the Byron-Bethany Irrigation District in northern California for "unauthorized diversion and use of water," the first such action against a senior rights holder, reports the Los Angeles Times.

Supreme Court says raisin-market program is unfair to grower

The Supreme Court ruled 5-4 that the raisin-marketing program unconstitutionally blocked a California grower from selling his crops, and said he should be compensated for the governmental seizure of his property.

Rural poor suffer in drought; tech wizards offer water apps

"For many Californians, the state’s long drought has meant small inconveniences such as shorter showers and restrictions on watering lawns.

Flavorful “petite peaches” a result of water shortage

Organic grower David Masumoto, who farms near Fresno, tells the Los Angeles Times, "We've been experimenting with this petite peach method this year, where we're cutting back water use 30 percent, 40 percent, 50 percent on some select areas of the orchard to see how it responds."

FDA finalizes veterinary-feed directive at antibiotic forum

Obama administration officials announced a final version of the FDA's veterinary-feed directive at a Forum on Antibiotics Stewardship at the White House today. The rule, an update of a 2000 directive, was proposed in December 2013 as the agency began steps to require veterinary approval for use of medically important antibiotics to treat or prevent disease in food animals. The FDA is halfway through a voluntary phase-out of the use of medically important antimicrobials as growth promotants in livestock.

California leaders propose $1 billion in drought relief

Gov. Jerry Brown and California legislative leaders proposed a $1 billion drought-relief package as the state enters its fourth year of drought. The pair of bills includes $128 million to alleviate the impact of drought...

Drought emergency is declared in Washington state

The governor of Washington state declared a drought emergency in three regions of the state, including key agricultural areas, due to record-low snowpack levels, said Reuters.

Bitter battle over listing “added sugars” on food packages

Foodmakers are in "a lobbying frenzy" over the administration's proposal to have the Nutrition Facts label on food packages include how much sugar was added during processing, reports the Los Angeles Times.

In top U.S. yogurt state, dairy farm workers are hard to hire

California is the No. 1 dairy state, but the popularity of Greek-style yogurt has turned New York into the top state for yogurt production, with more than 40 producers including Chobani, says the Los Angeles Times.

Thirsty almond trees and parched wildlife in California

California is the world's largest grower of almonds, with trees on 860,000 acres, a crop that be imperiled especially in the drought now entering its fourth year, says the New York Times.

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