Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Checking up on PP and other headlines

I saw that PP published again after a healthy holiday break (Dec. 25 to Jan. 7) . In the spirit of an industry cohort and friendly rival, I commend Jim for his thoughts on keeping things in perspective for 2009. Jim's sentiments on the blessings we have - apart from 401ks and cash cushions - were dead on.

Here are some headlines to account for the in the world of produce and the world at large:

Agriculture's next big challenge
opinion piece by Marshall Matz and George McGovern
While critics attack Obama's Ag Secretary pick, a defense of conventional agriculture... From the piece:

We do not yet see the yields with organic agriculture that would feed a hungry planet of almost 7 billion people. During the recent presidential campaign, Obama, to his credit, often talked of supporting American agriculture, from the small sustainable farms that market to the community to the large commercial farms that feed the world. He was exactly correct. The Department of Agriculture should be supporting research into organic and sustainable agriculture. Clearly, we must be more sensitive to the relationship between agriculture and the environment. But to criticize someone for supporting all sectors of agriculture seems shortsighted.

Big organic behind Vilsack?
Gristmill examines street cred of Vilsack

10 hot food trends for 2009
Cooking at home is #1, followed by good nutrition replacing fad diets. Fantastical, I know.....

Moody sees rising defaults Asset backed commercial paper market "in doubt" ; high yield corporate default rates to climb to between 10% to 12%

Kroger uses loyalty cards to target consumer coupons

Food Web site to link farmers to consumers in NY

Grow Montana a profile of efforts for a more local and sustainable model

New York governor speaks on epidemic of childhood obesity
From the NYT

Mr. Paterson said he would seek to ban junk food sales in public schools and to lend state money to green markets willing to open in poor communities. The governor has already unveiled a plan to impose an 18 percent tax on sugary sodas.

Sam's Club exec to lead W-M Int.

Doug McMillon, head of its Sam's Club division, will become president and CEO of Wal-Mart International next month as the world's largest retailer increasingly looks overseas to fuel expansion.

Grocers, vendors brace for battle on lower prices From Dow Jones:
SuperValu CEO says the first 6 months of 2009 will be battleground as retailers ask for price rollbacks from food manufacturers. Same store sales decline at SVU.

Chile suffers big trade deficit Falling copper exports caused $684 million surplus in November to fall to a $224 million deficit in December.

SC employers advised to use federal database

Border patrol ready for anticipated illegal immigration surge

Price optimization software for HEB in Mexico
Just like the U.S.

Mexico to grow 1% or show no growth in 2009

Over a half million foreclosures in Cali

Don't stimulate me, bro
Peter Schiff not a fan of government intervention

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