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The Latest from AgMag

Thursday, December 1, 2011

The secret farm bill thankfully is dead for the time being. Here's 5 lessons to keep in mind for the 2012 farm bill debate.

Friday, November 18, 2011

The Congressional Super Committee was created to make tough budget choices, but the leaders of the Ag Committees appear to be going in the opposite direction with more lavish subsidy giveaways to mega farms. EWG has new details about the secret farm bill that have started leaking out today.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Industrial agriculture’s lobbyists and a handful of their powerful Congressional allies have been working overtime to skirt the usual democratic process and write a new five-year farm bill behind closed doors.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

If you wanted an object lesson in how broken food politics are in America, you couldn't do better than to read how farm lobbyists, teamed up with big food companies and malleable friends in both parties in the House and Senate, tore up USDA's fledgling, modest school lunch reforms as they wrote this year's agriculture spending bill.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

The Congressional Super Committee was created to make tough budget choices, but the leaders of the Ag Committees appear to be going in the opposite direction with more lavish subsidy giveaways to mega farms.

Friday, November 11, 2011

The leaders of Congress' Agriculture Committees continue to deliberate the next farm bill in secret, and the conventional wisdom now is that direct payments may see cuts or be entirely banished in the final product. We hope so.

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Tuesday, November 8, 2011

It’s been two weeks since EWG president Ken Cook first sounded the alarm that a “secret” farm bill was in the works. He called out the industrial agriculture lobby and a handful of their powerful Congressional allies after it became clear that they were working overtime to write a new farm bill behind closed doors and slip it into law through the congressional “Super Committee.”

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Monday, October 31, 2011

A secret farm bill will leave out healthy food and hurt California. Nearly 70 environmental, public health, nutrition, food and farm groups – including EWG – are calling on California’s congressional delegation to take a stand in the current debate over food and agriculture policy.

Thursday, October 27, 2011


Industrial agriculture’s allies are hijacking the farm bill process. The farm subsidy lobby and a handful of their powerful Congressional allies are working overtime to skirt normal democratic processes, write a farm bill behind closed doors and slip it into law through the congressional Super Committee. But their plan to write a secret farm bill is finally showing up on the political radar.

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Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The new film “Freedom” is an industry bought-and-paid-for infomercial for environmentally destructive corn ethanol, masquerading as a pseudo-documentary on the nation’s oil addiction. Josh Tickell won the Sundance audience prize award for his 2009 film “Fuel.

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Tuesday, October 25, 2011

A timely new book explores how America’s food, farm and energy policies got derailed by greedy lobbyists and government subsidies.

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Monday, October 24, 2011

Chensheng (Alex) Lu, Associate Professor of Environmental Exposure Biology at Harvard School of Public Health has advised parents and caregivers to use the Shopper's Guide to "keep nutritional foods in their children's diets but avoid the intake of pesticide residues in the high-pesticide-risk items." Lu’s comments came in a study publichsed in Environmental Health Perspectives, that found that about half of the foods most frequently eaten by children were on EWG's Dirty Dozen list.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The Congressional Super Committee may decide the fate of the hotly debated “direct payment” subsidies for farmers in the next several weeks -- most likely in a smoke filled room without democratic action or input from good food reformers.  With some powerful lawmakers urging that all farm program decisions be made in secret, it is crucial to understand the long, tangled and sorry history of one of the federal government’s more wasteful programs.

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Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Since the Environmental Working Group released its 2011 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce earlier this year, apologists for the pesticide industry and conventional agribusiness have attacked it.

Monday, October 17, 2011

If the next farm bill gets written without input from healthy food reformers, maybe it’s time to occupy the agriculture committees?

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Amid an epidemic of childhood obesity, food companies are taking lessons from the tobacco industry on how to target children with advertisements for unhealthy products. The Sensible Food Policy Coalition is the latest industry attempt to undermine public health by lobbying Congress, federal agencies, the White House and the general public with misinformation and bad science.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Here in Washington, the so-called “Super Committee” on deficit reduction is continuing to scour the federal budget in search of $1.5 trillion in cuts over the next 10 years. The House and Senate committees that normally draft legislation authorizing federal programs and agencies have a looming deadline of October 14 to make recommendations on what could be cut.

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Monday, October 3, 2011

Lobbyists for polluting industries and opponents of environmental regulation have been tripping over one another to come up with self-serving lists of targets for the Congressional Super Committee as it labors to find ways to reduce federal spending and trim the deficit. The nation deserves a more thoughtful approach, one that recognizes that Americans want, and deserve, to live in a place where air and water are clean, where soil and natural resources are conserved for future generations, and where health and safety – not merely profit – stand atop the hierarchy of public values.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The popularity of Oscar-nominated “Food, Inc.” and writers Michael Pollan and Mark Bittman make it clear that consumer interest in food and farming issues is now deeply embedded in the cultural mainstream.

Monday, September 26, 2011

The current focus on deficit reduction has government leaders scrambling to find places to make significant cuts. Congress and the President are currently grappling with what to do about farm subsidies – namely the nearly $5 billion direct payment program that pays farmers and landowners year after year regardless of circumstances, and the federal crop insurance program that costs taxpayers between $6–to–$8 billion a year.

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