Top Industry News
2/17/2011 -- Nutrition Labels Sprout up in North Texas Supermarkets -- Star-Telegram
All 1,702 Safeway stores across North America, including 63 Tom Thumb supermarkets in North Texas, launched a shelf nutrition tag program Wednesday covering tens of thousands of items -- the biggest rollout for such an initiative in this market to date.
2/17/2011 -- Outlook for Food Prices: High -- The Wall Street Journal
The seeds of a sustained increase in food prices are about to be sown in Mississippi, Nebraska and other farm-belt states across the U.S.
2/17/2011 -- Immigration Authorities at Odds on Local Participation in Enforcement Program -- The Washington Post
Even as federal immigration officials were telling Arlington County, San Francisco and other jurisdictions that they could not opt out of a controversial immigration enforcement program, they were telling other municipalities that they could, according to internal Department of Homeland Security documents.
2/17/2011 -- President Obama: Tim Kaine 'would be a great senator' -- Politico
After discussing his options with President Barack Obama on Wednesday, Democratic National Committee chairman Tim Kaine is giving more thought to running for the Virginia Senate seat being vacated by Jim Webb next year, several reports indicate.
2/17/2011 -- House Slashes $8.4M from EPA Program -- The Hill
The House voted Wednesday night to sharply cut funding for an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) program that collects data on industrial greenhouse gas emissions.
2/16/2011 -- Conservatives in House Push for Another $20B in Budget Cuts -- The Hill
Conservative House Republicans are mounting what could be the most serious challenge to the GOP spending bill this week, offering an amendment that would slash federal funding by an additional $20 billion.
2/16/2011 -- House Science Chairman Seeks to Block Funding for New ‘Climate Service’ -- The Hill
Rep. Ralph Hall (R-Texas), the chairman of the House Science, Space and Technology Committee, is seeking to block funding for the overhaul of major federal climate change research and monitoring programs.
2/16/2011 -- Utah Immigration Bill Seeks Middle Ground in Debate -- USA Today
In state legislatures across the country, most of the immigration bills being debated aim to crack down on illegal immigration. Legislators are trying to cut off illegal immigrants from receiving public benefits, deny their U.S.-born children citizenship and force them out of states by granting local police the power to enforce immigration laws.
2/16/2011 -- FDA to Hire ‘Chief Outbreak Director’ -- Food Navigator-USA
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has said it is seeking someone to fill the newly created position of chief outbreak director, putting one person in charge of foodborne illness outbreaks, the FDA has said.
2/16/2011 -- Calorie Labels Don't Affect Kids' Fast-Food Choices -- HealthDay
TUESDAY, Feb. 15 (HealthDay News) -- Posting calorie counts of menu items at fast-food restaurants doesn't appear to inspire teenagers and parents of younger children to order less-fattening meals, new research finds.
2/16/2011 -- Danone May Make Small Nutrition, Water Acquisitions, CFO Says -- Bloomberg
Danone, the world’s biggest yogurt maker, may purchase smaller companies to expand in medical nutrition and water, Chief Financial Officer Pierre-Andre Terisse said.
2/16/2011 -- Crop Surge Lifts Farmland Prices -- The Wall Street Journal
Farmland values in much of the Midwest are climbing at their fastest rates since the 2008 boom, the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City said Tuesday.
2/15/2011 -- Businesses See Barack Obama's Budget as Slap -- Politico
A week ago, President Barack Obama told the nation’s business leaders he wanted to be friends. But after releasing his budget on Monday, they’re not feeling the love.
2/15/2011 -- Obama's Budget would Deeply Cut Farm Subsidies -- The Los Angeles Times
President Obama's 2012 budget plan calls for the elimination of more than $5 billion in public support for agricultural programs, including subsidies to the wealthiest U.S. farmers.
2/15/2011 -- Freeze Hits Vegetables -- The Wall Street Journal
A major freeze in Mexico earlier this month has resulted in a shortage across the U.S. of tomatoes, cucumbers, bell peppers and other produce that could last until April and lead to higher prices at the grocery store.
2/15/2011 -- Study: Eating more Fiber Could Mean Longer Life -- USA Today
Eat more fiber and you just may live longer.
2/14/2011 -- Budget 2012: Obama vs. House Republicans -- Politico
Monday’s release of President Barack Obama’s new 2012 budget puts in sharp focus the week-long brawl that lies ahead in the House, as newly empowered Republicans seek to deal a crippling blow to the president’s agenda, at home and abroad.
2/14/2011 -- Obama Spending Plan Criticized for Avoiding Deficit Commission's Major Proposals -- The Washington Post
President Obama drew fire Sunday from congressional Republicans and independent budget experts for his reluctance to advance a plan that would tackle the nation's biggest budget problems in the spending blueprint he will submit to Congress on Monday.
2/14/2011 -- Trade Deals, Job Help Linked in Congress -- The Wall Street Journal
WASHINGTON—The expiration of a program that supports those left jobless by trade pacts threatens to fracture the coalition of lawmakers backing trade accords with South Korea, Colombia and Panama.
2/14/2011 -- Threat Builds on the Margins -- The Wall Street Journal
This earnings season has seen a much-welcomed return to revenue growth, giving investors another reason to push stocks to two-year highs.
2/14/2011 -- New Food Safety Law Protects Whistleblowers -- Blooomberg Businessweek
Food industry workers who become whistleblowers gained protection against retaliation from their employers with a little-noticed provision in the sweeping food safety law President Barack Obama signed last month.
2/14/2011 -- U.S.D.A. Approves Pro-Ethanol Corn Over Food Industry’s Objections -- The New York Times
A corn that is genetically engineered to make it easier to convert into ethanol has been approved for commercial growing by the Agriculture Department.
2/2/2011 -- Dingell Demands Congress Fund New Food Safety Law -- Food Safety News
The Dean of the House of Representatives is calling on Congress to "adequately fund" the U.S. Food and Drug Administration so it can implement the sweeping food safety law President Obama signed in January.
2/2/2011 -- U.S. Corn Reserves at Lowest Level in More Than 15 Years -- The Associated Press
Reserves of corn in the United States have hit their lowest level in more than 15 years, reflecting tighter supplies that will lead to higher food prices in 2011. Increasing demand for corn from the ethanol industry is a major reason for the decline, according to federal officials.
2/2/2011 -- U.S. Trade Deficit Widens -- The Wall Street Journal
The U.S. trade gap widened in December, with the full-year trade gap registering its biggest percentage increase in 10 years. Still, exports continued their upward trend, setting a pace to achieve the Obama administration's goal of doubling by 2015.
2/2/2011 -- Sen. Jon Kyl Announces His Retirement from Senate -- Politico
Arizona Sen. Jon Kyl announced Thursday that he would retire after his current term, creating the fifth open seat Senate race of the 2012 cycle.
2/2/2011 -- Kochs Brothers' Plan for 2012: Raise $88 Million -- Politico
In an expansion of their political footprint, the billionaire Koch brothers plan to contribute and steer a total of $88 million to conservative causes during the 2012 election cycle, according to sources, funding a new voter micro-targeting initiative, grass-roots organizing efforts and television advertising campaigns.
2/2/2011 -- Del Monte to Name Interim CEO -- The Wall Street Journal
Del Monte Foods Co. plans to pull an interim chief executive from the ranks of one of the private-equity firms slated to buy it, as the company's search for a permanent leader continues.
2/10/2011 -- Trade Official Kirk Demurs on Timeline for Colombia, Panama Trade Deals -- The Hill
U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk repeatedly refused to commit to a timeline for the pending trade agreements with Colombia and Panama on Wednesday, saying the Obama administration “will not sign agreements for agreements’ sake.”
2/10/2011 -- GOP Leaders Propose Billions in Cuts to Obama's Budget Request -- The Washington Post
House Republicans sketched their vision for a smaller federal government Wednesday, proposing sharp spending cuts that would wipe out family planning programs, take 4,500 cops off the street and slice 10 percent from a food program that aids pregnant women and their babies.
2/10/2011 -- At CPAC Forum, Potential GOP Candidates Must Navigate Social-Fiscal Tension -- The Washington Post
A wide field of Republican potential presidential hopefuls will descend on Washington on Thursday for the conservative movement's biggest annual party, where they will navigate the tussle for attention between social conservatives and newly empowered tea party activists.
2/10/2011 -- Virginia Sen. Webb Won't Run for Reelection, Leaving Democrats Looking to Kaine -- The Washington Post
Sen. James Webb's announcement Wednesday that he will not run for reelection sent Virginia Democrats scrambling to find a replacement in a turbulent 2012 national landscape that already is tilted in favor of Republicans.
2/10/2011 -- GOP Cuts Deep as Right Revolts -- Politico
Faced with a revolt on the right, House Republicans scrambled Wednesday to adjust their budget strategy and come up with tens of billions of dollars in additional savings — including a possible across-the-board cut — to appease tea party supporters.
2/10/2011 -- Republicans Push back against Claims they would 'Gut' Key Air Law -- The Hill
House Republicans are pushing back against claims by Democrats that a bill to block the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating greenhouse gas emissions is an attempt to “gut the Clean Air Act.”
2/9/2011 -- White House to Revive Latin America Deals -- The Wall Street Journal
The Obama administration is accelerating efforts to revive stalled trade agreements with Colombia and Panama, aiming to resolve outstanding issues this year and send the pacts to Congress for ratification immediately thereafter, U.S. Trade Representative Ron Kirk is expected to tell a congressional committee Wednesday.
2/9/2011 -- Sen. Webb Won't Seek Another Term in 2012 -- The Hill
Sen. Jim Webb (D-Va.) has decided not to run for reelection, a decision that closes the door on what could have been a hotly-contested rematch between Webb and former Sen. George Allen (R-Va.).
2/9/2011 -- Del Monte's CEO Search Continues as Sale Nears -- The Wall Street Journal
The search for a new chief executive of Del Monte Foods Co. may not end before the likely completion of its private-equity buyout, according to a person familiar with the situation.
2/9/2011 -- Sara Lee Profit Surges on Gains -- The Wall Street Journal
NEW YORK—Sara Lee Corp. was unable to raise prices enough to offset pressure from higher protein and coffee costs, weighing on its fiscal second-quarter results.
2/8/2011 -- Obama Says Businesses must Hire, Invest to Grow Economy -- The Washington Post
President Obama on Monday pledged to make government an ally of companies as they emerge from the bleak downturn of recent years, even as he challenged executives to do their part to help resurrect the economy.
2/8/2011 -- Obama Trade Rep to Make House Debut -- The Hill
President Obama’s trade representative has been on the job for two years, but has never appeared at a hearing with the House panel that oversees trade.
2/8/2011 -- A New Dem Threat to Health Care Law -- Politico
A handful of moderate Senate Democrats are looking for ways to roll back the highly contentious individual mandate — the pillar of President Barack Obama’s health care law — a sign that red-state senators are prepared to assert their independence ahead of the 2012 elections.
2/8/2011 -- Credit Card Debt Rises for First Time in 2 Years -- The Associated Press
Americans are putting more money on their credit cards after more than two years of cutting back, a sign that they are gaining confidence in the economy.
2/8/2011 -- Is Anti-Obesity Campaign Working? -- The Associated Press
WASHINGTON— Michelle Obama had doubts about making a campaign against childhood obesity one of her signature issues.
2/7/2011 -- Obama Tells Chamber that Business has 'a Responsibility to America' -- USA Today
WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama prodded American businesses to do their share to help the economy, calling on executives to "get in the game" and begin investing nearly $2 trillion accumulating on their balance sheets.
2/7/2011 -- GOP Eyes Rules that Firms Say Hurt Jobs -- The Washington Post
House Republicans are scrutinizing a wide array of existing and proposed Obama administration regulations in areas as diverse as the environment and Wall Street, and they are taking guidance from industry groups that say the rules threaten jobs.
2/7/2011 -- Senators Look for Immigration Deal -- Politico
Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) have rekindled their alliance on immigration reform, taking some early steps to test the political will for addressing the contentious issue this year.
2/7/2011 -- What's Next for Tax Code? Geithner Discusses Overhaul with Wide Range of Groups -- The Washington Post
Timothy F. Geithner can't seem to talk enough these days about corporate tax reform. From D.C. to Davos, the Treasury secretary has chatted up chief executives and academics, bankers and labor groups, Republicans and Democrats, all in the name of fixing a tax code that most everyone agrees could use a major overhaul.
2/7/2011 -- White House, Key Senator in Standoff over South Korean Trade Deal -- The Washington Post
Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) has a beef with the South Korean trade deal, and it could hurt President Obama's prospects for winning quick approval of the pact.
2/7/2011 -- EPA Chief Faces Hostile House GOP -- Politico
The showdown between House Republicans and the White House over climate change and environmental policies kicks off Wednesday with EPA chief Lisa Jackson as the star witness.
2/7/2011 -- At Grocery Stores, Shoppers are Paying the Same for Less -- Star-Telegram
Shoppers might not be handing over more money at the supermarket checkout, but their bags of groceries probably feel lighter as national brand makers put less product in identical-looking packaging.
2/7/2011 -- Food Prices Worldwide Hit Record Levels, Fueled by Uncertainty, U.N. Says -- The New York Times
UNITED NATIONS — Global food prices are moving ever higher, hitting record levels last month as a jittery market reacted to unpredictable weather and tight supplies, according to a United Nations report released Thursday.
2/7/2011 -- Raw Milk Cheesemakers Fret Over Possible New Rules -- The New York Times
Federal regulators are considering whether to tighten food safety rules for cheese made with unpasteurized milk — and the possibility has cheesemakers and foodies worried that the result will be cheese that is less tasty and not much safer.
2/7/2011 -- Study: Global Obesity Rates Double Since 1980 -- USA Today
The world is becoming a heavier place, especially in the West.
2/3/2011 -- Food Companies and the Unspoken Price Elephant in the Room -- The Wall Street Journal
Commodity prices are going up, but when will the global food companies dare to pass on rising cocoa and wheat increases to consumers stumbling out of tough economic times?
2/3/2011 -- Sugar Prices Hit New Heights on Australian Cyclone -- The Wall Street Journal
NEW YORK—Sugar prices spiked to their highest level in more than 30 years as a massive tropical cyclone slammed into the northeast coast of Australia, the world's third-biggest exporter of the sweetener.
2/3/2011 -- Senate Rejects Healthcare Repeal -- The Hill
The Senate on Wednesday voted down a repeal of President Obama’s healthcare act along party lines, 47-51.
2/3/2011 -- Inhofe sees Dem Backing for Plan to Kill EPA Climate Rules -- The Hill
Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.) said Wednesday that his bill to upend EPA climate change rules could gain traction in the closely divided Senate, claiming several Democrats are potential backers.
2/3/2011 -- House GOP Readies Bill to Prohibit EPA from Regulating Carbon Emissions -- The Washington Post
Acting on a vow to fight the Obama administration on climate issues, Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.), chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, unveiled draft legislation Wednesday to try to strip the Environmental Protection Agency of its power to regulate greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act.
2/2/2011 -- Foodmakers at Work on Healthier Fare -- Star Tribune
The latest set of nutritional guidelines received sweeping support from the packaged-food and grocery industries. But some experts question whether the government's recommendations are effective at communicating with consumers about healthy eating.
2/2/2011 -- Giving Workers a Union Choice -- The Wall Street Journal
One of the under-appreciated fault lines in the U.S. economy is between the 22 "right-to-work" states and the rest of the country. The former have tended to do much better economically. Now some non-right-to-work states such as Indiana, Wisconsin and Michigan are thinking about joining this club that allows workers to opt-out of union membership. (more)
2/2/2011 -- Senate Dems’ Money Pace Flags -- The Hill
Vulnerable Democratic senators have raised far less money than their predecessors did two years ago, a sign that their party could struggle to keep its majority.
2/2/2011 -- Upton, Inhofe to Float Plan Wednesday that Blocks EPA Climate Rules -- The Hill
House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-Mich.) and Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.) will unveil draft legislation Wednesday that would prohibit the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act, a GOP aide on the House panel said.
2/2/2011 -- U.S. Chamber Cool to Obama’s ‘Clean Energy Standard' Plan -- The Hill
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce signaled Tuesday that it’s likely to oppose President Obama’s call for a “clean energy standard” for electric utilities, alleging the proposal isn’t feasible.
2/2/2011 -- Manufacturing Notches Strong Growth -- The Wall Street Journal
Factories in the U.S., Europe and Asia are picking up the pace, according to reports Tuesday that are encouraging news for a global economy hungry for the growth needed to create jobs. However, the world-wide surge in manufacturing is being accompanied by an upswing in commodity prices as producers soak up raw materials and crops.
2/2/2011 -- Number of Illegal Immigrants Holding Steady at 11 Million -- The Wall Street Journal
A two-year decline in the number of illegal immigrants in the U.S. during the recession has halted, according to a new estimate by the Pew Hispanic Center.
2/2/2011 -- Nestlé Buys 'Medical Food' Start-Up -- The Wall Street Journal
Nestlé S.A. has acquired a U.K.-based pharmaceutical start-up testing a chewing gum to help kidney-disease sufferers, the first move in the company's latest effort to build a business selling food products that target diseases.
2/1/2011 -- Many Food Label Claims May Mislead Rather than Inform -- USA Today
Boost your immunity. Protect healthy joints. Improve brain development. Reduce cholesterol. Regulate digestion.
2/1/2011 -- New Dietary guidelines: Eat Less, Eat Better and Lose the Salt -- The Washington Post
Americans need to make big changes in their eating habits to fight the obesity epidemic and a host of ailments caused by poor diets, including consuming less sugar, fat and salt and more fish, fruits and vegetables, the Obama administration recommended Monday.
2/1/2011 -- Guidelines Call for a Pinch Less Salt -- Politico
The federal government released the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans on Monday, and for the first time since the recommendations were introduced in 1980, they call for a drastic reduction in the consumption of salt.
2/1/2011 -- GOP Leader McConnell to Force Senate Vote on Healthcare Repeal -- The Hill
Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) will force a vote on healthcare repealas early as this week despite pledges from Senate Democrats to block the effort.