Pilgrim’s to pay $ 110.5 million fine in U.S. price-fixing investigation
The second-largest poultry processor in the country, Pilgrim’s Pride Corp., said on Wednesday that it will pay a $ 110.5 million fine as part of a plea agreement with the Justice Department, which is investigating price fixing in broiler chicken products. Pilgrim’s announced the plea deal one week after a second former chief executive was indicted on charges of being part of a multiyear conspiracy among industry executives to rig bids and fix prices.
Lawsuit says Trump administration tries to cut farm wages
Agricultural guestworkers will see sharply lower wages because of the USDA’s decision to cancel a semiannual survey that is used to calculate their pay, said a lawsuit filed Wednesday in federal district court in Fresno, California. The suit asks the court to order the USDA to carry out the October survey so that the Labor Department can use the results to set minimum wages for the country’s 250,000 or more H-2A guestworkers.
TODAY’S QUICK HITS
Guidelines for outdoor brucellosis study: The USDA announced a draft policy on safety precautions researchers must take when conducting brucellosis research outdoors on large animals, such as hogs, cattle, elk, and bison. The contagious disease is expanding in the Greater Yellowstone region and is found in feral swine in many areas. (Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service)
World temperatures continue to rise: Globally, last month was the hottest September ever recorded in 141 years of recordkeeping. For the year so far, the global average temperature is only 0.07 degrees F. (0.04 degrees C.) off the record set in 2016. (NOAA)
Priorities for next president: No matter who wins on Nov. 3, the next president must act on six food and ag priorities, including protecting workers, expanding rural broadband, and investing in climate resiliency, says the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture. (NASDA)
Covid cases hit record in rural counties: More than 71,000 rural Americans tested positive for the coronavirus last week, the highest one-week total yet, with the Upper Midwest the hardest-hit region in the nation. (Daily Yonder)
Top food banks: Feed the Children, based in Oklahoma City, tops the Food Bank News list of largest U.S. food banks, when measured by revenue, at $ 288 million. It is followed by the Midwest Food Bank, based in Normal, Illinois, at $ 278 million, and the Houston Food Bank, at $ 209 million. (Food Bank News)