Category Archives: Agribusiness

California Exports Hit October High

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$12.91 billion in goods exported to foreign markets would mark a 16.5 percent increase over October 2009. According to an analysis of today’s U.S. Commerce Department figures by Beacon Economics, we’re doing better than we’ve done in three years, in … Continue reading »


US Senate Chews on Food Safety Bill

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Ahead of Thanksgiving, the US Senate is discussing the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act. The legislation passed out of a Senate committee last year, but took this long to move through the legislative body’s digestive tract. S. 510 would give … Continue reading »


Vets & Unemployment

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California is home to more veterans than any other state in the nation: 2 million men and women. You’d think their experience and training would make them eminently desirable to employers, but the 2009 California unemployment rate for veterans 18 … Continue reading »


Hang Onto Your Wallet; Food Prices Rising

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Brace yourselves, warns the Wall Street Journal. Prices of staples including milk, beef, coffee, cocoa and sugar have risen sharply in recent months. Food makers and retailers don’t want to eat those higher costs forever. “The big challenge will be, … Continue reading »


The Green Mile

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That gunboat you see to your left operates on a 50/50 mix of algae-based fuel and diesel. Rear Admiral Philip Cullom, of the navy’s sustainability division, put it this way: “We no longer want to be held hostage by one … Continue reading »


NUMMI Refugee Finds Job at Bloom Energy

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Half a year after NUMMI closed, what happened to those former auto workers in the San Francisco Bay Area? 47-hundred people lost their jobs in Fremont – thousands more working for suppliers were also cut loose… at a time when … Continue reading »


Alcohol Wholesalers Angle for Position in DC

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Heads up from the Wine Spectator. Last week, Congressman William Delahunt (D-Mass.) submitted a revised version of H.R. 5034, the Comprehensive Alcohol Regulatory Effectiveness (CARE) Act. The House Judiciary Committee has scheduled a public hearing on the bill for September … Continue reading »


Green Wine Costs Less?

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I don’t read Wine Spectator regularly, so I learned of a provocative new study by two UC environmental economists from KCRW’s Good Food (11:37 in). UCLA’s Magali Delmas and Ph.D. student Laura Grant at UC Santa Barbara evaluated thousands of … Continue reading »


Bits & Pieces

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Many small and mid-size wineries are sour on proposed legislation in Washington DC that could make it difficult, if not impossible, for them to ship product directly to consumers. Portfolio reports H.R. 5034, backed by alcohol wholesalers, would give more … Continue reading »


BPA Brouhaha in DC

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Manufacturing and politics go together like peanut butter and jelly. Or perhaps I should say like tomatoes and bisphenol-A, aka BPA. Food processing is big business in California, and one of California’s big political figures, Senator Dianne Feinstein, has proposed … Continue reading »