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Who really won the Schmeiser Decision?; Hafta have CAFTA?; Farmers support wind energy; Other CropChoice news

(Monday, June 14, 2004 -- CropChoice news) -- Below are links to recent news and commentary on CropChoice.

  • So, who really won the Schmeiser Decision?
    (Sunday, June 13, 2004 -- CropChoice guest commentary) -- The headlines reported a Supreme Court Decision in favor of Monsanto in their 21 May judgement on the Schmeiser v. Monsanto case.

    But what exactly did Monsanto win? Indeed, did Monsanto 'win', or was it at best, the weakest possible victory - a 5 to 4 decision - on just one of the two contentious issues, with a significant loss on the other?

    The text of the Decision illustrated the depth of the disagreement among the judges. The very first sentence of the judgement was:

    "Held (Iacobucci, Bastarache, Arbour and LeBel JJ dissenting in part): The appeal should be allowed in part".

    Because Schmeiser was the appellant, 'partial support for the appeal' means a split Decision, with winners and losers on both sides.

    To analyze this pivotal Decision, I’d like to first work through the two issues, and then discuss some of the implications that lead from the Decision... http://www.cropchoice.com/leadstry.asp?recid=2612

  • Corn farmer survey shows very strong support for wind energy incentives
    WASHINGTON, June 14, 2004—A just-completed national survey of corn producers, conducted by RMA Research, Inc. of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, for the American Corn Growers Foundation (ACGF) found a strong, majority level of support among farmers on a range of critical issues related to the future growth of the U.S. wind industry. The ACGF Wealth From The Wind survey, funded by a grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, was completed on June 10, 2004. Five hundred farmers were polled in sixteen top corn-producing states with over 90 percent of 2004 planted corn acreage based on USDA data... http://www.cropchoice.com/leadstry.asp?recid=2611

  • Manure management: Getting the smell out of farm policy
    (Thursday, June 10, 2004 -- CropChoice guest commentary) -- Staying clear of the manure can be as tricky in the nation's capitol as it is in a feedlot. As the line from the play goes, we are up to our necks in it – which is why we walk with our heads held high.

    In our barn there's an old manure spreader that's been rusting away since my grandparents' time. Back then, animal manure was a valuable source of fertilizer, and single farms commonly produced both livestock and crops. But with the postwar push to feed the world, "efficient" and specialized industrial-style production approaches, aided by farm policy, segregated crops and livestock on separate farms... http://www.cropchoice.com/leadstry.asp?recid=2604

  • Farm Aid's biotech position beneficial to rural America
    (Monday, June 7, 2004 -- CropChoice guest commentary) -- Dan McGuire letter to the editor, High Plains Journal:
    The latest attack on Farm Aid and Willie Nelson by Trent Loos in the May 31 edition of the Journal is way off the mark.

    Rural America knows that Farm Aid does a great job in raising key issues such as agribusiness-driven, low-price U.S. farm and trade policy, globalization and corporate concentration, including in the biotech (GE) seed industry... http://www.cropchoice.com/leadstry.asp?recid=2600

  • Do we hafta have CAFTA?
    (Saturday, June 5, 2004 -- CropChoice guest commentary) -- The United States and five Central American countries (Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua) signed an agreement May 28 that National Farmers Union believes will adversely impact domestic producers of sugar, fruit, vegetables, ethanol and other commodities. Estimates of sizable trade gains for U.S. farmers and ranchers are overly optimistic. The CAFTA countries have a combined population of approximately 31 million people with limited resources that can be used for the purchase of agricultural products. If the Free Trade of the Americas agreement becomes reality or if CAFTA nations establish similar agreements with other countries, these limited market opportunities would become further reduced... http://www.cropchoice.com/leadstry.asp?recid=2598

  • What makes Percy Schmeiser so persistent?
    (Wednesday, June 9, 2004 -- CropChoice guest commentary) -- In this interview we learn about the aspects of Percy’s life that contributed to his persistence in the fight against Monsanto since 1998. Every minute of the hundreds of hours I have spent helping Percy has benefited all the farmers of the world, just as he feels he has done with 6 years of his life. Monsanto has not won this issue, but has essentially shot itself in the foot by its vicious attack of Percy and the farmers of the world. We have not seen the last of Percy Schmeiser. And our struggle to Reclaim The Commons will be successful! http://www.cropchoice.com/leadstry.asp?recid=2603

  • World Farmers’ Congress adopts agriculture concentration remedies... http://www.cropchoice.com/leadstry.asp?recid=2601
  • Rural America as a fuel source... http://www.cropchoice.com/leadstry.asp?recid=2610
  • Farm conservation program plan still misses the mark... http://www.cropchoice.com/leadstry.asp?recid=2608
  • Seeds of doubt (Five-part series in The Sacramento Bee) ... http://www.cropchoice.com/leadstry.asp?recid=2606
  • 'The Fate of Family Farming': Agriculture and democracy... http://www.cropchoice.com/leadstry.asp?recid=2602
  • Agriculture platforms short on content, short even on rhetoric... http://www.cropchoice.com/leadstry.asp?recid=2607
  • How tough are the crop cops? http://www.cropchoice.com/leadstry.asp?recid=2609