Family Food Bytes
Farming in the City
Windy City Harvest, an urban agricultural program of the Chicago Botanic Garden, recently opened Farm on Ogden, an urban farm in North Lawndale. The 20,000-square-foot facility will provide training to more than 100 people in its first year of operation and will aggregate more than 177,000 pounds of produce annually, including 14,000 pounds of tilapia, as well as 33,000 pounds of produce from the Lawndale location and 130,000 pounds of produce from 12 other urban farms. (Farmweek Now)
The trade war between the U.S. and China officially began as President Trump followed through on his aggressive threat to impose tariffs on $34 billion worth of Chinese goods. China followed through with their expected retaliation. As of right now, it is unclear how this trade war will conclude. (New York Times)
Impending tariffs on Provolone and Mozzarella cheese are stressing American cheese makers who usually rely on foreign markets. The cheese levies are a response to the U.S.-placed tariffs on Mexican steel and aluminum. Today, Mexico was slated to raise its levy on U.S. cheese to as much as 25 percent; China is expected to implement tariffs on $34 billion of U.S. goods including cheese, whey, and dairy byproducts. (Wall Street Journal)
Proposed Federal Regulations
The Office and Management and Budget recently recommended the Food Safety and Inspection Service and the food safety functions of the FDA be merged into the USDA. This would create a new agency called the Federal Food Safety Agency. The FDA would be renamed the Federal Drug Administration. (Farm Doc Daily)
The Company's sales soared 68 percent in the first six weeks of offering fresh beef sandwiches. McDonald’s, which has changed its menu numerous times during the years, decided to return its focus where it started– fresh beef. And that’s good news for farmers as strong demand for cattle also drives feed needs and spurs corn and soybean sales.
The Oak Brook-based company, which recently opened its world headquarters in downtown Chicago, built a fresh beef supply chain in the U.S. in just six months.
McDonald’s now offers made-to-order Quarter Pounders with fresh beef patties. McDonald’s sells about 63 million burgers per week in the U.S. and about 660 million pounds of beef per year worldwide. The fresh beef patties are all sourced from North America. That makes McDonald’s one of the largest buyers of beef in the nation. It currently consumes about 2 percent of all beef produced annually in the U.S. (Farmweek Now)
The farmer-owned dairy cooperative, Prairie Farms Dairy, celebrates its 80th anniversary. That cooperative includes 952 farm member families in the Midwest and 6,000 employees in 17 states, and its footprint continues to expand.
“Prairie Farms’ story is an excellent story to tell and consumers accept it because many times the milk is from the cow to their table within 72 hours,” Mullins said. “It all starts from the quality of the raw milk that we get off the farm from our producers and what we’re able to do in the processing chain.” (Farmweek)
About Family Food Bytes: This is a collection of articles gathered from both mainstream and agriculture media and is designed to keep you informed as a member and leader within the Cook County Farm Bureau organization. The articles summarized above are not intended to represent Cook County Farm Bureau policy or positions, but rather to provide members an idea of what is being reported regionally, nationally and globally.