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Mar 26, 2014

Landing at wrong airport can be “catastrophic” – U.S. regulator

WASHINGTON, March 26 (Reuters) – The U.S. National
Transportation Safety Board issued a safety alert on Wednesday
on how airplane pilots can avoid landing at the wrong airport,
after recent incidents when planes landed on much shorter
runways than their intended destinations.

“All of us have experienced a loss of situational awareness
at some time, but the consequences for pilots mistaking a nearby
airport for the intended one, or landing on the wrong runway or
a taxiway, can have catastrophic consequences,” said NTSB
chairman Deborah Hersman.

Mar 25, 2014

Pricier beef ‘here to stay’ as food costs seen higher: USDA

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. food prices are expected to rise more rapidly this year after a very tame 2013, led by gains in beef, poultry and egg prices, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said on Tuesday.

The food price inflation outlook assumes normal weather, the USDA said, adding that the California drought poses a risk of bigger increases in many food categories, and that high supermarket prices for beef are “here to stay.”

Mar 13, 2014

U.S. senators urge help for producers hit by deadly pig virus

WASHINGTON, March 13 (Reuters) – Two U.S. senators urged the
U.S. Department of Agriculture to approve disaster assistance
for small pork producers affected by a deadly virus that has
killed more than four million pigs across the United States in
the past year.

Democrats Debbie Stabenow of Michigan, chair of the Senate
Agriculture Committee, and Kay Hagan of North Carolina, also
urged increased research to find a vaccine for Porcine Endemic
Diarrhea Virus (PEDv), for which no treatment currently exists.

Mar 5, 2014

Miner Alpha settles with U.S. over coal pollution violations

WASHINGTON, March 5 (Reuters) – Alpha Natural Resources Inc.
, one of the largest U.S. coal producers, has reached a
consent decree to settle a complaint about pollution discharged
by coal mines into Appalachian rivers and streams, federal
authorities said on Wednesday.

The U.S. Department of Justice and Environmental Protection
Agency said Alpha will spend about $200 million to install and
operate wastewater treatment systems and to implement
comprehensive upgrades to reduce the level of pollution from
mines in Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia and West
Virginia.

Mar 4, 2014

Cut in funding does not undermine U.S. meat safety: agriculture secretary

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A cut in funding for the U.S. meat and poultry inspections contained in the Obama administration’s 2015 budget proposal does not mean less attention to food safety, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said on Tuesday.

“The bottom line is – we are not compromising safety here,” Vilsack said on a conference call with reporters following the release of the White House’s budget proposals.

Mar 4, 2014

Cut in funding does not undermine U.S. meat safety -ag secretary

WASHINGTON, March 4 (Reuters) – A cut in funding for the
U.S. meat and poultry inspections contained in the Obama
administration’s 2015 budget proposal does not mean less
attention to food safety, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack
said on Tuesday.

“The bottom line is – we are not compromising safety here,”
Vilsack said on a conference call with reporters following the
release of the White House’s budget proposals.

Feb 27, 2014

Rampant food waste a barrier to cutting poverty -World Bank

WASHINGTON, Feb 27 (Reuters) – The world loses or wastes a
staggering 25 percent to 33 percent of the food it produces for
consumption, losses that can mean the difference between an
adequate diet and malnutrition in many countries, the World Bank
said in a report released on Thursday.

“The amount of food wasted and lost globally is
shameful,” said Jim Yong Kim, president of the World Bank.

Feb 23, 2014

In no one’s interest for Ukraine to split apart: U.S.’s Rice

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – It is not in the interest of Russia, Europe or the United States to see Ukraine split apart and it would be a “grave mistake” for Russia to send military forces into that country, President Barack Obama’s national security adviser said on Sunday.

Speaking on the NBC program “Meet the Press”, Susan Rice was asked about a possible scenario in which Russia would send forces into Ukraine to restore a government more friendly to Moscow.

Feb 22, 2014

Facebook’s big buy, WhatsApp messaging app, back up after outage

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – WhatsApp, the rapidly expanding mobile messaging app, suffered an outage for more than three hours on Saturday, frustrating users just days after its acquisition by Facebook for $19 billion.

“WhatsApp service has been restored. We are so sorry for the downtime…,” WhatsApp tweeted to its more than 1 million Twitter followers on Saturday around 5:48 p.m. EST (2248 GMT).

Feb 20, 2014

USDA Census shows bigger farms, older farmers

WASHINGTON, Feb 20 (Reuters) – The proportion of U.S. farms
with annual sales and government payments of $1 million or more
doubled in the five years through 2012, the U.S. Department of
Agriculture said on Thursday, even as the total number of farms
fell.

The figures were part of the USDA’s “Census of Agriculture,”
which surveys all U.S. farms and ranches and the people who
operate them every five years. Results of the Census form the
backbone of U.S. agricultural policy.

    • About Ros

      "Ros Krasny is Boston Bureau Chief, leading coverage of the New England scene. She was previously a regional Federal Reserve correspondent based in Chicago, and spent many years writing about agricultural commodity markets with Bridge News and Knight-Ridder Financial news."
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