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Washington Insider

House Repasses TPA

The House passed today — for a second time — a bill to provide President Barack Obama with trade promotion authority. The vote on the bill that included the Motion to Concur in the Senate Amendment with an Amendment to H.R. 2146, the Trade Priorities and Accountability Act, was 218 to 208. Read the details in an exclusive excerpt from The Hagstrom Report.

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Key Issues

Tim Ault, Mary Jo Toumert and Richard Scarsella of Great Lakes Cheese Co., Inc. make Hill visits yesterday.

Tim Ault, Mary Jo Toumert and Richard Scarsella of Great Lakes Cheese Co., Inc. make Hill visits yesterday.

Members Make a Difference on Capitol Hill During Advocacy Days

Advocacy Days kicked off yesterday afternoon with nearly 50 members traveling to Capitol Hill for congressional visits. As of this afternoon, they visited 86 offices, meeting with legislators and their staffs to discuss GMO labeling, Child Nutrition Reauthorization, Trade Promotion Authority and several other issues of interest to dairy. Representatives Ron Kind (R-WI) and Glenn “GT” Thompson (R-PA) launched the Washington Insiders Breakfast this morning, sharing their insight into key legislative and political developments in the 114th Congress.

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Photo credit: John Murphy, senior vice president of International Affairs, Chamber of Commerce

Photo credit: John Murphy, senior vice president of International Affairs, Chamber of Commerce

IDFA Commends President’s Renewal of Trade Promotion Authority

The International Dairy Foods Association, representing 550 dairy foods companies and their suppliers, issued the following statement in response to President Barack Obama’s renewal of Trade Promotion Authority: “We commend the President for signing Trade Promotion Authority into law today and thank the entire administration for its collaboration with Congress in passing the TPA-2015 bill,” said Connie Tipton, president and CEO of IDFA.“A lot is at stake for U.S. dairy producers, manufacturers, suppliers and marketers as our dairy exports continue to be a major success story for industry growth,” Tipton said. “These agreements will allow the U.S. dairy industry to grow and prosper with increased trade opportunities.”

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IDFA to Provide Guidance, Training and Collaboration on Listeria Control

While recognizing the strong food safety track record the ice cream industry has enjoyed, nearly 30 members of the International Ice Cream Association met with IDFA’s senior regulatory team last week to discuss issues surrounding the challenges of controlling Listeria monocytogenes and to determine what IDFA can do to help members and the ice cream industry overall. Working with its newly established ice cream safety task force, IDFA will develop a reference and guidance document, offer education and training, and continue to collaborate with federal regulators and others in the food industry.

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GMA, IDFA and Others Appeal Court Ruling on Vermont Labeling Law

IDFA joined the Grocery Manufacturers Association and two other associations today in filing a brief with a federal appellate court explaining that a district court judge erred in refusing to block implementation of Vermont’s law mandating warning labels on products with ingredients from genetically engineered (GE) plants. The associations say the law violates the First Amendment’s free-speech guarantee because it imposes burdensome new speech requirements on food manufacturers and retailers.

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Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack

Secretary Vilsack Stresses Importance of Milk in Schools

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack told the members of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce at a hearing on Tuesday that he’s concerned about declining milk consumption in schools because, “in terms of the nutritional bang for the buck, there’s probably nothing better than a glass of milk.” He agreed to work with Representatives Glenn “GT” Thompson (R-PA) and Joe Courtney (D-CT) on the bipartisan School Milk Nutrition Act of 2015, H.R. 2407, which is aimed at reversing this trend.

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Food and Worker Safety to Take Center Stage at Regulatory RoundUP

IDFA has added a new panel discussion on worker safety to round out the program for Regulatory RoundUP next week in Washington, D.C. Panelists from the Occupational Health and Safety Administration, the Environmental Protection Agency and the law firm Arent Fox will address the increased inspection and regulation of ammonia refrigeration systems by EPA and OSHA. Two sessions on food safety and Listeria control for dairy products are also on the agenda.

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Expanded Show Floor 85 Percent Sold Out

The International Dairy Show will be the largest it has been since 2009, when it was part of the Worldwide Food Expo. It has exceeded 2013 numbers with 85 percent of available space already taken. Read more

MovingDairyForward
idfa-logo-with-taglineHands-on Microbiological Testing, Food Safety and Laboratory Practices
July 14 - 16, 2015
Jordan Valley Innovation Center
Springfield, MO

 This course is offered exclusively for dairy industry professionals with food safety responsibilities, including those working in quality assurance and control, sanitation, maintenance, operations and more. The course was developed by IDFA and Chestnut Labs to provide skills and tools for dairy plant professionals with responsibility for ensuring food safety.

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Organic Market Is Booming

Organic milk sales increased 9.5 percent during the first 11 months of 2014, reports USDA.

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