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U.S. Coast Guard OKs two alternative container weighing verification methods for SOLAS compliance, including AgTC’s ‘Rational Method’; still uncertain how ocean carriers will respond (05/02/2016)

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Coast Guard last week on April 28 gave its stamp of approval to two alternative methods for obtaining certified container weights to comply with new international regulations: one proposed by agricultural shippers and another proposed by the South Carolina Ports Authority, the Journal of Commerce (JOC) reported. The move (potentially) paves an easier path for exporters, particularly agriculture shippers, but it’s not yet certain how container terminals and carriers will respond individually. The announcement from the USCG, the U.S. agency tasked with implementing the SOLAS amendment, comes just 62 days before the rule takes effect July 1.

USSEC hosts U.S. Food-Bean Buyers Conference targeting Korean soy food processing industry (05/02/2016)

The U.S. Soybean Export Council (USSEC) hosted the 2016 U.S. Food-Bean Buyers Conference and Tabletop Trade Show on April 7 in Seoul, South Korea. The objective of the conference was to support U.S. food-bean exporters and Korean food-bean end-users / importers to take full advantage of the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement. Representatives of several Midwest Shippers Association (MSA) member food soybean export suppliers attended the event.

Grain trade alarmed by USDA biotech plans (05/02/2016)

The Agriculture Department's plan for a “radical” overhaul of the way it regulates biotech crops risks disrupting exports of U.S. farm commodities unless the changes are coordinated with importing countries, agribusiness groups say., according to a report out in Agri-Pulse newsletter.

No checklists? Your food safety plan is incomplete (05/02/2016)

There’s a reason Santa and Mom always use checklists. They work. It’s no different in the realm of food safety. Make a list, check it twice, have a backup plan. In many ways, that’s what the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and its accompanying rules are all about — preventing problems through a systematic, science-based approach. Food Safety News covered aspects of FSMA compliance in a feature on May 2.

Spain continues to be a top EU destination for U.S. soy exports -- USSEC (05/02/2016)

The feed and livestock industries of the European Union and Russian Federation depend on U.S. soybean farmers to maintain a consistent supply of soybean meal. Currently, countries from these regions are the second largest U.S. soy importer, according to a story in last week’s edition of USSEC News, the online newsletter of the U.S. Soybean Export Council.

Hampton Creek “smells a rat” in ag appropriations bill over FOIA requests (05/02/2016)

A paragraph on page 34 of the 206-page 2017 House Agricultural Appropriations Bill - spotted by Hampton Creek’s eagle-eyed new VP of policy Tiny May last week - would exempt industry-funded commodity market research programs such as the American Egg Board from the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), according to a story in Food Navigator last week.

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