Need to catch up? Here are some stories you might have missed this week.
1. It's a dairy deal. An impasse over how to handle dairy policy in the farm bill may have been reached, reports Feedstuffs' Jacqui Fatka. If the deal works out, it could allow for a vote on the farm bill as early as Jan. 27.
2. Cash will be king. Ohio State University economist Matt Roberts told attendees of the 2014 American Farm Bureau Federation convention that building cash on hand will be important for farm businesses in the near future, as ag incomes and lifestyles are ripe for dramatic change in the next 3-5 years.
3. 90-year-old war veteran has advice for beef producers. Make your living outside of your beef business, and pour the profits into expansion, says Gordon Hazard, a Mississippi beef producer. Check out his video interview here.
4. Spending bill funds research, cuts horse slaughter. The $1 trillion omnibus spending bill unveiled this week and recently approved by the House and Senate includes about $350 million more for ag programs than the FY13 funding bill. Get the full breakdown of what's included.
5. Dairy decrease? The National Milk Producers Federation, testifying this week to a panel working on the 2015 edition of Dietary Guidelines for Americans, said Americans should be encouraged to eat three servings a day of dairy. Though that's the current recommendation, many don't, NMPF said.
6. NAFTA changed the way we eat. In a week of heavy discussion about trade and trade issues, the North American Free Trade Agreement celebrates its 20-year anniversary. And what do we have to show for 20 years of NAFTA? Modified eating habits, NPR reports.
7. Public research investment is waning: During a University of Nebraska Heuermann Lectures panel discussion Tuesday, former USDA Secretary Dan Glickman said domestic ag research is falling behind, but the U.S. still has the best scientists, and "we have to be a (research) leader."
And your bonus:
Cows' milk vodka? It's a real thing. A New Zealand-produced vodka crafted from cows' milk is poised to hit U.S. store shelves this month. Called Milk Money Vodka, MSN reports the product is "twice distilled from milk and twice filtered for … a 'full-bodied light cream taste.'"