Strains of the influenza virus that decimated Midwestern turkey and egg production in 2014 and 2015 are now wreaking havoc in poultry production in several parts of the world, including China where the virus has jumped species and infected and killed humans.
Building on a 10 percent reduction in the use of antibiotics to treat farm animals, the British Cattle Veterinary Association is encouraging its members and the cattle industry to further reduce the use of the antimicrobials, says The Cattle Site, a website for industry news. The recommendations are aimed at lower overall use of antibiotics and minimizing critically important antibiotics, such as cephalosporins, fluoroquinolones and colistin.
An 18-year study of 60 wild bee species in Britain found that populations declined when the bees foraged on crops treated with neonicintinoid pesticides, according to the Washington Post. "The study provides some of the first evidence that the effects of neonicotinoid exposure can scale up to cause major damage to bees," the Post said.
Too Good To Go, a food rescue app, has convinced restaurants in six countries to sell end-of-the-day food at a discount to hungry locals in an effort to reduce food waste. The six-month-old app has a major presence in the UK, with a waitlist of 95 London eateries anticipating its August launch, Eater writes.
Over the past year, UK cropland values have fallen by 9 percent, says Agrimoney, with one land company seeing a continued decline this summer while another says prices are stabilizing after the steepest decline in at least 12 years. Both companies "were sanguine about the effect of a British exit from the EU on land prices," said Agrimoney, based in London.
Without action to protect the efficacy of antibiotics and to develop new antimicrobials, 10 million people a year would die worldwide due to drug-resistant bacteria by 2050, said a study commissioned by the British government. The report called for coordinated action worldwide to reduce unnecessary use of antibiotics, pointing to animal agriculture in particular.
Organic farms operate 1 percent of U.S. cropland, so Yuma County in the southwestern corner of Arizona is exceptional. As much as 12 percent of farmland in the county is in organic production, reports the Yuma Sun, up from an estimated 7 percent in 2012.
Farm income in Britain fell by 29 percent during 2015, according to a government estimate, to the smallest amount in eight years, reported Bloomberg.
Two gene-edited crops -- white button mushrooms and "waxy" hybrid corn -- are years from the market yet they already are creating turmoil in Britain over the use of gene-editing technology and the propriety of importing foods created with it, says The Guardian.