Wildfire Update & Ag Secretary Responds

Wildfire Update & Ag Secretary Responds

Wildfire Update & Ag Secretary Responds plus Food Forethought. I’m Greg Martin with today’s Northwest Report.

It has been hard to not notice that wildfires have been plaguing the northwest. Sunrises and sunsets have shown lingering smoke over a vast area. But the season is not over. A new fire just east of Hood River has caused delays on Interstate 84 along the Columbia River. Fire crews are having a tough time with the blaze in the rough terrain of the area. But good news out of Idaho as the Karney Fire has been officially contained. That fire has consumed some 440 acres in Boise County. An 18-year old firefighter has been arrested in connection with the starting of that blaze.

Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack is firing back at the HSUS after they filed a lawsuit against the USDA over the National Pork Board’s purchase of The Other White Meat registered trademark. The HSUS makes the claim that because the money is being used for public affairs and is in violation of the law.

VILSACK: I will just simply say this, the Pork Checkoff is an important tool, in fact all these checkoff’s are important tools - voluntary assessments by producers so they put the resources together to promote research and promote product and export and use in the United States. And I think the allegations that the Humane Society has raised involved activities that occurred in 2006 which was before I became Secretary. But in any event I want to make sure that folks understand and appreciate that at USDA we are very supportive of these checkoffs.

Now with today’s Food Forethought, here’s Lacy Gray.

Each season seems to come with it’s own special reason to party. Fall is football season, and even if you’re not a football fan, it means tailgate parties. Tailgate foods and drinks though are often high in calories and fat, so how do you still throw a “mean tailgater” , while making the fare healthier? One of the solutions fits right in with tail gating tradition, and that would be grilling meats. Just choose lean cuts of meat and you’ll be grilling healthy. To go with those tasty grilled meats serve big trays of fresh fruits and veggies, with plenty of low fat dipping sauces or even flavored low fat cream cheeses on the side. As far as drinks go, there are numerous low calorie or non-alcoholic ales out there to choose from, and don’t forget sparkling fruit drinks, natural ciders, and water. If you just can’t see a tailgate party without chips, go for the baked variety, which pack the crunch without all the calories. If you go with these healthy alternatives, you’ll be doing yourself and your friends a favor. They probably won’t even realize that they’re eating healthy, but they will notice that you’re serving up some really tasty tailgate goodies.

Thanks Lacy. That’s today’s Northwest Report. I’m Greg Martin on the Ag Information Network.

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