John Maday

Corn-stover ethanol could increase CO2 emissions

Removing corn residues for production of cellulosic ethanol puts carbon into the air rather than back into the soil, and likely would generate more CO2 emissions than gasoline, at least initially, according to a new study from the University of Nebraska. FULL STORY »

Fat freed?

Everyone knows saturated fats lead to cardiovascular disease. However, a major research review getting media attention this week provides further evidence everyone just might be wrong. FULL STORY »

Mixed start for 2014 ag trade

Monthly export totals for red meats and meat products dropped off somewhat in January, but overall U.S. trade in agricultural products started 2014 at a good pace, according to the latest trade data from USDA. FULL STORY »

“Ag-gag” laws in the news

Several recent news items have brought new attention to farm-protection legislation known as “ag-gag” laws, adopted in several states to protect farmers and ranchers from clandestine activities of animal-rights activists. FULL STORY »

FDA updates food-label regulations

The federal government this week launched its proposed changes to food labels, intended to more accurately reflect the nutritional value and calorie content of packaged foods. The proposed changes will be published in the Federal Register on March 3, then will be open for public comment for 90 days prior to final rulemaking and implementation. FULL STORY »

Alltech survey reveals feed-industry trends

Globally, feed mills produced 963 million metric tons of livestock feed during 2013, according to results of a major survey from animal health and nutrition company Alltech. Aidan Connolly, vice president of Alltech and director of the company’s global feed survey says analysts expected feed production to top 1 billion tons this year, but several factors contributed to slower-than-expected growth. FULL STORY »

USDA trains veterinarians on foreign animal diseases

Animal agriculture is an important part of people’s livelihoods – and the economy – across the globe, with more than 19 billion chickens, 1.5 billion cows, 1 billion sheep and 1 billion pigs worldwide. The world is growing increasingly interconnected, with greater international travel and larger volumes of international trade. A significant animal disease outbreak could quickly move across the world and bring with it devastating consequences. FULL STORY »

Consumers report reductions in red-meat purchases

U.S. consumers say they ate less red meat during 2013 compared with the previous year, according to a survey from market-research company Mintel. Price appears to be a major factor, although health concerns also play a role. FULL STORY »

Study indicates better convergence in grain markets

During the years from 200 through 2011, grain traders noticed wider-than-usual discrepancies between futures and cash prices for wheat, corn and soybeans. This “non-convergence” created concerns over the viability of those futures contracts as price-discovery and risk-management tools. FULL STORY »

USDA raises estimate of corn use, lowers price forecast

The USDA boosted its estimate for domestic corn use 2013-2014 corn use by 100 million bushels in this month’s Feed Outlook report, based on projected increases in ethanol production and grain exports for the new crop. FULL STORY »

Progress in FMD research

Since 1954, scientists with USDA’s Agricultural Research Service (ARS) have conducted research at plum Island, New York to prevent and control foreign animal diseases that threaten U.S. livestock production and food security. A new article from ARS outlines progress, particularly in defending against foot and mouth disease (FMD). FULL STORY »

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