Family Farm and Food Bytes
WALMART MAKES AN INVESTMENT IN VERTICAL FARMING START-UP – Walmart said Tuesday that it is investing in vertical farming company Plenty and plans to carry the start-up’s leafy greens in all California stores later this year. With the move, the country’s largest grocer is diving into a trendy area of food tech that brings farm produce closer to customers’ kitchen tables. (CNBC)
PRITZKER BUDGET OFFERS TEMPORY TAX RELIEF - During a combined budget and state of the state message inside the State Capital in February, the governor reported on state finances, credit, overdue bills while presenting a budget for the State of Illinois for the FY 22-23 fiscal year. Proposals include temporary one-year freeze on grocery taxes, a temporary one-year freeze on gas taxes and a one-time property tax rebate.
Pritzker’s budget also includes a substantial increase for the Illinois Department of Agriculture cannabis regulatory oversight and licensing as well as funding for regulating industrial hemp. FarmWeek
FLIES FOR BREAKFAST? INSECTS ARE ABOUT TO BE PET FOOD, AND THE EFFORT WILL AIM FOR HUMAN PLATES AS WELL – Black soldier flies for breakfast, lunch or dinner? Archer-Daniels-Midland Co. is partnering with Paris-based biotech company InnovaFeed to invest in a future where this could be an everyday possibility. (MarketWatch)
ILLINOIS SNAP RECIPIENTS CAN BUY MORE GROCERIES ONLINE – Governor JB Pritzker and the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) announced recently that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has approved Sam's Club and Meijer Grocery for SNAP online purchasing. (WEHT)
A LOVE AFFAIR? HOW AMERICA’S INSATIABLE APPETITE IS INSPIRING INNOVATION IN THE CHOCOLATE SECTOR – Both start ups and multi-billion dollar food giants are looking at novel trading and technological techniques to find more socially just and environmentally sustainable ways to enjoy our nation’s favorite treat. (Forbes)
ILLINOIS REPRESENTED ON NEW URBAN ADVISORY COUNCIL - A longtime advocate for urban agriculture in Illinois has been appointed to serve on an inaugural USDA federal advisory committee. Angela Mason, associate VP for community engagement and senior director of Windy City Harvest at the Chicago Botanic Garden, is one of 12 members selected by USDA Sec. Tom Vilsack to work on the Advisory Committee for Urban Agriculture. FarmWeek
STRATTON LAUCHES AG INITIATIVE OF FOOD INSECURITY, AG CAREER DIVERSITY - Seeking to expand access to fresh fruits and diversify Illinois agriculture sector, Lieut. Gov. Juliana Stratton launched a new initiative. Known as “Ag Connects Us All” or #AgConnectsUsAll on social media, the initiative stems from Stratton’s work chairing the Governor’s Rural Affairs Council and her efforts to raise awareness of and support for the state’s diverse agriculture industry. FarmWeek
About Family Farm and 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.