Category Archives: Agriculture

Grants Available for Specialty Crops – March 26 Deadline

In early February 2015, a spokesperson for the Michigan Department of Agricultural and Rural Development (MDARD)announced the availability of a series of grants for Michigan specialty crop growers. The grants are funded by the Crop Block Grant Program, an initiative of the United States Department of Agriculture Ag Marketing Servicesprogram. The grants are designed to …

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Boyz In the Agrihood: Planned Communities Trade Golf Courses for Working Farms in North Carolina

I don’t play golf.  I like golf, I’ll go out and hit around with friends or colleagues, but I don’t “play golf”.  To me, playing golf means 18 holes on a weekend, maybe 36, and perhaps a round or two during the week.  No, I don’t play golf. And I don’t think I’m alone in …

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USDA (U.S. Department of Agriculture) Finalizes Import Regulations for “Mad Cow Disease”

  In November, the USDA announced a final rule that will align the Agency’s import regulations for bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE or “mad cow disease”)with international standards. According to a USDA November news release, the final regulation will allow for the safe trade of bovines and bovine product, while still protecting the U.S. from the introduction of …

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How Monsanto Applies to Nonagricultural Biotechnology

The facts behind the Supreme Court’s recent ruling in Monsanto v. Bowman are simple enough. Farmers are able to buy soybeans containing Monsanto’s patented glyphosate resistance technology under a license that permits them to plant and grow one generation of crops. Vernon Bowman skirted this program, however, by purchasing commodity soybeans from a grain elevator knowing that the seeds …

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Patent Exhaustion Rejected: Patented Seed Purchaser Has No Right to Make Copies

The Supreme Court in Bowman v. Monsanto Co. ruled unanimously that a farmer’s replanting of harvested seeds constituted making new infringing articles.  While the case is important for agricultural industries, the Supreme Court cautioned that its decision is limited to the facts of the Bowman case and is not a pronouncement regarding all self-replicating products. In a narrow ruling …

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Congress Fails to Advance Federal Farm Bill or Disaster Assistance Bill

The National Law Review recently featured an article, Congress Fails to Advance Federal Farm Bill or Disaster Assistance Bill, by Laura L. Riske of Michael Best & Friedrich LLP:   Every five years, Congress takes up the Farm Bill which covers food and agriculture policy under the purview of the United States Department of Agriculture.  The current 2008 Farm …

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Impact of Agriculture Reform, Food and Jobs Act of 2012 on Dairy Farmers

The National Law Review recently published an article regarding Agriculture Reform written by Kristiana M. Coutu of Varnum LLP: This summer, the U.S. Senate voted to proceed to consideration of theAgriculture Reform, Food and Jobs Act of 2012 (2012 Farm Bill). The proposed bill can be accessed on the Senate Agriculture Committee’s website, however, be warned, it will take time and …

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