Consumers and industry members are being urged to sign an online petition to support reform of federal policies that require the use of corn for fuel rather than food.   The petition is available on the new Web site www.cornforfoodnotfuel.com, sponsored by associations including the National Chicken Council.

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 This week’s report on corn and other grains by the U.S. Department of Agriculture marks an important turning point in the evolution of agriculture, according to the National Chicken Council: for the first time, the government is predicting that more corn will be used in this crop year for motor fuel than used for animal feed to help produce food for people.

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Demand for ethanol has increased since 2006 as a result of the renewable fuels standard mandate and because there has been an expanding export market for ethanol, according to the Daily Livestock Report (DLR) today. 

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The ethanol industry has taken President Obama to task for suggesting that distilling alcohol from corn is not the most efficient way to provide transportation fuel and that more research is needed into “cellulosic” sources of ethanol. 

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Chicken exports in May this year were 295,568 metric tons valued at $360.64 million compared with 279,206 tons valued at $309.40 million in May 2010, a 5.9-percent increase in quantity and a 16.6-percent increase in value. 

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Broiler production next year is expected to be 37.405 billion pounds, 1.1 percent more than the 36.991 billion pounds estimated for 2011, but 228 million pounds less than last month’s forecast, according to USDA’s World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates report this week.

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The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) published a Federal Register Notice this week responding to questions raised concerning its January 2008 Salmonella Initiative Program (SIP) and announcing several  modifications to its 2008 program. 

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USDA recently issued its semiannual regulatory agenda, which includes the following actions affecting international trade of poultry that are expected over the next six months. 

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The House Energy and Power Subcommittee voted today to have the Administration study the cumulative effect of environmental regulations. 

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Steve Pretanik is retiring today after 31 years of service as the National Chicken Council’s Director of Science of Technology, NCC President Mike Brown announced today.

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