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House Democrats push new food safety bill
USDA would receive more authority to recall meat, poultry and eggs products that are contaminated with pathogens like Salmonella under new legislation introduced Wednesday by Reps. Rosa DeLauro, D-Conn., and Louise Slaughter, D-N.Y.
House bill would add muscle to fight foodborne superbug outbreaks (The Washington Post)
Congresswomen propose solution to issue of pathogens as adulterants (Food Safety News)
USDA says food prices are on the rise — especially fruit, dairy
The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Wednesday maintained its forecast for U.S. food prices to rise by 2.5 percent to 3.5 percent in 2014, in line with historic norms, but raised its estimates of price increases for dairy and fresh fruit.
Related: Citrus disease driving US fruit prices higher (Reuters)
FDA aims to make serving sizes on nutrition labels more realistic
The Wall Street Journal
The last time the Food and Drug Administration weighed in on portion sizes of packaged foods, in 1993, it was using data on what Americans consumed in the 1970s and 1980s. Its current proposed overhaul of the nutrition facts panel wants serving sizes to reflect a portion closer to what people actually eat.
Odds tilt toward GOP Senate
Republicans are in the strongest position to win back the Senate since losing it eight years ago. Over several months, the party has expanded its range of targeted seats, and the National Republican Senatorial Committee has helped defeat insurgents it didn't want representing the GOP in the midterm elections.
Related: Tea party's Senate game plan falling apart (The Hill)
Should Obama veto spending bills?
Would an old-fashioned, Bill Clinton-styled presidential veto help cut the Gordian Knot in the Senate?
Cochran's strategy to draw black Democrats to polls appears to have worked
The Washington Post
In an email sent late last week, the black Democratic mayor of Vicksburg, Mississippi, urged 2,000 supporters to vote for Sen. Thad Cochran, crediting the Republican for securing federal money for key local projects and calling him one of the city's "best economic development tools."
Sugar intake should be halved, advises SACN report
The intake of added sugar in people's daily diet should be halved as part of a campaign to cut Britain's soaring obesity levels, according to an influential report by government advisers the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition.
Related: UK scientist calls sugar targets 'counterproductive' in obesity battle (Food Navigator)
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Immigration reform dead until after Obama leaves office, both sides say
The Washington Post
The two-year attempt to push immigration reform through Congress is effectively dead and unlikely to be revived until after President Barack Obama leaves office, numerous lawmakers and advocates on both sides of the issue said this week.
Scalise election could mean slim chance for immigration (The Hill)
Schumer warns GOP on immigration (The Wall Street Journal)
Joe Biden sets immigration meeting (Politico)
Consumer advocates worry latest seafood guidance fails to protect
Food Safety News
The Environmental Working Group and the Mercury Policy Project, along with mercury researcher Philippe Grandjean, think the seafood guidance recently updated by the FDA and EPA fails to protect vulnerable consumers from methylmercury exposure while still providing beneficial omega-3 fatty acids.
TPP talks resume next week in Canada
The Poultry Site
Twelve country officials involved in the U.S.-led Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations plan to meet in Ottawa from July 3-12 to iron out outstanding issues like tariffs and intellectual property rights.
Rabobank: Fourth of July barbecue costs to reach all-time high
This Fourth of July, Americans will pay more for their backyard barbecues than ever before. The inaugural 2014 Rabobank BBQ Index shows an overall price increase from $51.90 in 2004 to $55.62 during the financial crisis in 2007, to a total of $66.82 in 2014.
US corn reserves expanding by most since 2005
A bumper corn harvest in 2013 means stockpiles in the U.S., the world's biggest grower, are rising at the fastest pace in nine years, leading to a predicted price drop of about 9.5 percent in six months.
ConAgra revenue beats estimates as commercial food sales rise
ConAgra Foods Inc. reported better-than-expected quarterly revenue as higher sales in commercial foods business made up for weakness in its consumer foods and private brands businesses.
Sources say Del Taco fast food chain exploring sale
U.S. fast food chain Del Taco, which specializes in Mexican cuisine as well as American favorites like burgers and fries, is in the early stages of exploring a sale that could fetch more than $500 million, people familiar with the matter said Wednesday.
Food retailing 2020: Why the future is bright for Aldi, Sprouts and Amazon
While the percentage of groceries purchased online remains significantly lower than most other consumer goods, e-commerce sales of food rose 13.7 percent in 2013, reaching $21.1 billion — and significantly outpacing growth across brick-and-mortar channels, according to a new report.
Iowa firm recalls nearly 1 ton of sausage
USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service
K & W Sausage of Evansdale, Iowa, is recalling approximately 1,761 pounds of sausage products because of misbranding and undeclared allergens.
Editor's note: Members of the American Frozen Food Institute have access to AFFI's unique Product Recall Insurance Program. Ensure you're protected during a food safety crisis using AFFI's one-of-a-kind program. For more information, please click here.
Can athletes get you to eat meatless burgers?
The Wall Street Journal
More companies want to bring veggie proteins to the masses, promising better taste than in the past, meat-like texture or a lower price than meat or eggs. But the mainstream public has a long history of resisting fake meat.
Robot restaurants and sci-fi kitchens: How tech is changing the way we eat
As part of a recent initiative called Cognitive Cooking, IBM supercomputer Watson has been putting its smarts to work by dreaming up new recipes.
The Internet of Things meets hydroponics — to grow a better vegetable
About 60 miles from the site of the deadly 2011 nuclear disaster in Fukushima prefecture, inside a former silicon chip manufacturing facility owned by the Japanese computer company Fujitsu, a small team of highly trained engineers are working on one of the company's hottest new products: smart lettuce, which sells for triple the normal price.
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