Need to catch up? Here are some stories you might have missed this week.
1. RFS battle. A "who's who" of the Renewable Fuel Standard debate appeared Thursday at an Environmental Protection Agency hearing to either defend the EPA's proposed 2014 RFS volume decreases or advocate instead for restored mandates. Here's what they had to say.
2. What does the American farmer look like? Chris Bennett of Delta Farm Press has a good idea. Check out his photo galleries and corresponding stories of "where food really comes from." Part I, Part II
3. Waiting on the farm bill. There's hope! It may be waning, but it's there. Feedstuff's Jacqui Fatka reports that Monday will be the moment of truth for negotiations, as a Title I compromise has been submitted to the Congressional Budget Office for scoring. So, you better hurry up and wait.
4. Highlighting conservation. The USDA this week highlighted its efforts to improve conservation while reiterating the need for farm bill authorization to reinstate some programs that were discontinued in October. Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack was joined by Ducks Unlimited CEO Dale Hall to explain the farm bill's conservation offerings.
5. Chesapeake report. Also part of the week's conservation push, the USDA released a new report on the Chesapeake Bay watershed, finding that conservation methods used in the area – which touches six states and is home to 17 million people – are working.
6. Meat and myths. The American Meat Institute released a video this week containing commentary from Texas Tech meat scientist Mindy Brashears, Ph.D., addressing consumers' fears about superbugs. Watch it now.
7. A South African tour. Mike Wilson, executive editor of Farm Futures, is abroad this week in South Africa. He will be bringing back lots of information on the area's livestock and grain farms. Check his blog for updates.
And your bonus:
Could these folks be the next Peterson Farm Bros.? Ladies of the Edwards County, Ill., Farm Bureau Women's Committee have put together a friendly competition. Who's the best at "Braggin' on Ag?"