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7 Things You Might Have Missed This Week

Action on the Farm Bill, a new use for tobacco, and a message for rural school guidance counselors

Published on: May 10, 2013

Miss something? Here are a few of the week's stories.

1. Senate gets to work on the Farm Bill. Senate Ag Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., released her mark on the bill Thursday, while full ag committee markup is scheduled for May 14. The House Ag Committee will markup their version May 15.

2. Ag immigration reform considered in committee. Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy, D-Vt., Thursday kicked off committee markup of the Senate's immigration bill. The bill includes provisions specific to agriculture that were developed through cooperation of the Agricultural Workforce Coalition and the United Farm Workers.

Senate action on Farm Bill, a new use for tobacco, and a message for rural school guidance counselors
Senate action on Farm Bill, a new use for tobacco, and a message for rural school guidance counselors

3. Seeds of biotech resentment grow. Farm Futures Editor Mike Wilson takes a trip down GMO memory lane – and looks ahead, too – in his latest blog series, Seeds of Biotech Resentment. The four-parter takes a look at why GMOs are such a polarizing issue. Start with part one, but follow the links at the end to read the whole series. Leave a comment while you're there.

4. Last call for census answers. The USDA this week made its last call for census responses, which are (really) due May 31. USDA reminds producers that federal law requires a response from everyone who receives the Census form. More than 2 million completed forms have already been returned.

5. Tobacco's new use? Fewer Americans are using tobacco products every year, so what will happen with the tobacco crop? That's a question University of California scientists are trying to answer with the development of engineered tobacco that produces oils for the biofuel industry. Check out the video that explains the project.

6. Rain, rain go away. That's the chorus of many this week. But while it rains in some areas, drought took a slightly larger foothold in the West and the Plains, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. Did you get rain? How much? Sound off on our Facebook page or tweet us @FarmDaily.

7. USDA extends cover crop haying/ grazing deadlines. USDA's Risk Management Agency announced this week it will allow approved crop insurance providers in certain states to extend the deadline date for haying and grazing of cover crops, if they choose. The previous deadline was May 10.

And the bonus…

Go west, young man. But does that mean back to the farm? Nebraska Farmer Editor Curt Arens has a message for all those guidance counselors out there – maybe it wouldn't be so bad to steer youngsters back home after graduation. Rural America will, as the Motel 6 slogan goes, "leave the light on for you."

As always, keep up throughout the week with daily ag news and markets updates by visiting us on Twitter or Facebook.