Family Farm and Food Bytes
MCDONALD'S TO TEST MCPLANT BURGER CREATED WITH BEYOND MEAT IN EIGHT U.S. RESTAURANTS NEXT MONTH – McDonald's will test the meatless McPlant burger created as part of its partnership with Beyond Meat in eight U.S. restaurants next month. The trial is the latest step in McDonald's cautious march to add plant-based meat to its menu. (CNBC)
FARM GROUPS ASK SUPREME COURT TO BLOCK CALIFORNIA’S PROP 12 – With California’s Proposition 12 animal welfare law set to go into effect on Jan. 1, two farm groups asked the Supreme Court to invalidate the voter-approved standards as an unconstitutional burden on farmers and consumers everywhere. (Successful Farming)
IS YOUR NATIONAL COFFEE DAY CUP FILLED WITH US-GROWN COFFEE? NOT LIKELY, BUT THAT COULD CHANGE – The U.S. consumes and imports more coffee than any other country in the world. But could a nation full of coffee drinkers ever grow a significant portion of its own here? Maybe. (USA Today)
ERS: STEPPED-UP BASIS TAX PROPOSAL IMPACTS 20% OF FARMS – For months farmers have been concerned about proposed tax changes, including the elimination of stepped-up basis. New research from USDA’s Economic Research Service confirms those concerns are warranted as nearly 20% of farms could have an increased tax liability, including 65% of the value of U.S. farm production. (Farm Progress)
FOOD PRICES ARE CLIMBING AMID WORKER SHORTAGES, SUPPLY-CHAIN PROBLEMS, EXTREME WEATHER AND MORE – Grocery shopping has gotten more expensive. In August, grocery store prices crept up another 0.4%, leaving them 3% above their level a year earlier and 7.6% higher than they were two years ago, before the COVID-19 pandemic upended the U.S. economy. Staples such as beef, pork, fish and eggs have notched double-digit increases just in the last 12 months. (USA Today)
HOW COVID MISINFORMATION CREATED A RUN ON ANIMAL MEDICINE – For more than a year, misinformation that ivermectin is effective at treating or preventing the coronavirus has run rampant across social media, podcasts and talk radio. Even as the Food and Drug Administration has said the drug is not approved to cure COVID and has warned people against taking it, sales for the medicine have gone up and the demand has strained the equine and livestock world. (New York Times)
IS THERE A NATIONAL TURKEY SHORTAGE? HOW THANKSGIVING AND OTHER HOLIDAYS MAY BE IMPACTED – Turkey remained a staple of Thanksgiving and many holidays during the pandemic, even if families couldn't all gather as they had in previous years. And because dinner tables were tighter and more intimate than ever during the holiday season, many Americans opted for a much more petite turkey than before — meaning the demand for smaller turkeys is higher than experts have ever seen it. And while COVID-19 vaccines may enable more family members to reunite over the holiday season safely (albeit carefully!) this year, it's unclear if the trend of roasting a smaller turkey is here to stay. (Good Housekeeping)
PHASE ONE AGREEMENT WITH CHINA BOOSTS US EXPORTS – The latest trade numbers show strong U.S. agricultural exports despite transportation challenges. Trade data shows U.S. exports are up this year with a significant increase in exports to China. (Hoosier Ag Today)
INSURANCE PROGRAMS FOR ORGANIC AND SPECIALTY CROPS ON THE RISE – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Risk Management Agency is seeing growth in programs to insure a larger volume and variety of organic and specialty crops, reflecting increased consumer purchases of such products. (Business Insurance)
CONAGRA, PEPSICO AND OTHER FOOD MAKERS GRAPPLE WITH HIGHER COSTS – Escalating costs and supply-chain challenges are squeezing major U.S. food companies, boosting food costs and hampering the flow of staples to grocery-store shelves. (Wall Street Journal)
WHY IMMUNITY IS THE NEW BUZZWORD IN FOOD. EVEN CHEESE BALLS – If you’ve seen a barrage of food packages promising to help your immune system lately, you’re not alone. Even cans of cheese balls now are touting immune-system benefits. (Wall Street Journal)
IFB VIDEO TEAM NOMINATED FOR EMMYS -
Illinois Farm Bureau’s video team has been nominated for two regional Emmy awards with winners to be announced on November 20. The nominations were announced Oct. 5 by the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Chicago/Midwest chapter.
• Outstanding achievement for informational/instructional – short form or long form content: Mental Health Awareness: “Don’t do nothing.” The video featured Adrienne DeSutter, who shared the importance of taking care of yourself and those around you.
• Outstanding achievement for human interest: A Work of Art. The video featured the Illinois farmer behind the breakaway rim.