ALTOONA, Wis. (WEAU)- President Trump is telling the media that the first 2 days of trade talks between the U.S. and China in Bejing have gone very well. So well in fact that those talks may be extended into a third day to try to come to agreement on more sensitive issues. Since the first of December, the Chinese have agreed to some key U.S. demands-cutting tariffs, at least temporarily on U.S. auto imports, buying more U.S. soybeans, promising to open their markets to more foreign investments and passing laws to prevent forced technology transfers. And this week the Chinese government has oked the import of 5 types of genetically modified crops-2 types of canola and soybeans and one variety of corn. If these current trade talks are considered a success, President Trump says he will meet with Chinese officials later this month at the World Economic Forum is Switzerland.
US and China flags, Photo Date: 1/24/2013 / Cropped Photo: CDC Global / CC BY 2.0 / (MGN)
Bayer Ag, which now owns Monsanto the manufacturer of Round-up herbicide, got some good news this week from that California judge overseeing more than 620 lawsuits filed by people claiming Round-up caused them to contract cancer. The judge has agreed to limit the evidence that can be used to prove any claims. Those cases will be split into two phases with the plaintiffs needing to prove Round-up caused their cancer before the case can move to the second or damage phase. The next of those trials is set to begin on February 25th.
Because of the government shutdown, USDA officials are now saying farmers will get an extension so they can still sign-up for the Market Facilitation Program as part of the farm bill. The final determination on a final date to sign-up will be figured out once the government reopens and farmers can once again access their Farm Service Agency offices. The USDA also announced yesterday that they will be able to fund the food stamp program through the end of February.
Wisconsin isn't the only state getting a new Agriculture Secretary following the November elections. Minnesota's new governor, Tim Walz, has named Thom Peterson to be their new Commissioner of Agriculture. Peterson leaves his job as government relations director with the Minnesota Farmers' Union.
Today is day 1 of the 2 day Lacrosse farm show at the Lacrosse Center. The show will run from 9 to 3:30 both days with free admission.