Tag Archives: USDA

Biobased Products Offer the World a Promising Solution: Petroleum Products Caught Off-Guard


It takes 450 years, almost half of a century, for a plastic bottle to decompose. In 2012 about 32 million tons of plastic garbage was collected of which only nine percent was recycled. Through industrial biotechnology, innovators are creating greener alternatives to consumer and personal care products that are commonly made using petroleum. In their article, Biobased products popping up throughout the economy, Agri-Pulse highlights how biobased products are rising in popularity and provides several examples Read More >

Environmental & Industrial  |  Leave a comment  |  Email This Post
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Is a National Fund to Promote Organic Produce a Good Idea?


Slate recently posted an interesting discussion about the Organic Trade Associations’ requested check-off program. “Checkoff” programs are essentially taxes that farmers pay to a national fund, the revenue from which is used to promote (“market”) the consumption of commodities like pork, beef, eggs, and milk. Checkoff programs’ activities can take the form of generic advertising campaigns, or they can look more like political lobbying. According to Slate, this tax may now be extended to the organic Read More >

Farmer Gene  |  Leave a comment  |  Email This Post
Tags: , , , ,

The Apple is “Now Better Thanks to Genetic Modification”

Arctic Apple

In a recent editorial, the Wall Street Journal discusses whether or not the recently USDA approved genetically engineered apple, Arctic® Apple, and potato, Innate™ potato, can win customers amid fear and loathing from interest groups that sow distrust of genetically modified foods, or GMOs. …Arctic and Innate are among the first genetically modified foods pitched in part to consumers, rather than directly to farmers dealing with drought or pests. Like all genetically engineered foods, they’ve undergone extensive safety testing. Arctic apples could help grocery stores Read More >

Farmer Gene  |  Leave a comment  |  Email This Post
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Agricultural Coexistence: We All Can Get Along

Corn crops

On March 12-13, 2015, The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will be holding a Stakeholder Workshop on Coexistence to advance the understanding of agricultural coexistence. Coexistence is not a safety issue. Agricultural Coexistence is the practice of concurrent cultivation of conventional, organic, identity preserved (IP), and genetically engineered (GE) crops consistent with underlying consumer preferences and farmer choices. The Workshop will discuss opportunities for making coexistence more achievable and a basic consideration for all stakeholders. It Read More >

Farmer Gene  |  Leave a comment  |  Email This Post
Tags: , , , , ,

The Administration Focuses on Improving Food Safety


The Obama administration wants to establish a new agency that would be housed within the Department of Health and Human Services and serve as the primary voice on food safety standards and compliance with those standards. The Agency would be named the Food Safety Administration, the Obama administration said in its new budget request. The New York Times covered the story here: …At least 15 government agencies — from the Environmental Protection Agency to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration — have Read More >

Farmer Gene  |  Leave a comment  |  Email This Post
Tags: , , , ,