California Rice Acreage and Syngenta Ordered to Sell Arkansas Farmland
**After idling half the state’s normal rice acreage last year due to water shortages, farmers are back in full force with harvest underway in California’s Sacramento Valley.
They’re off to a later start because of planting delays in the spring, which has pushed harvest into the rainy season.
Substantial downpours this time of year could cause muddy fields, further delays and rice plants to fall over, dramatically reducing yields and quality.
**The USDA announced a new partnership between the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility and the National Animal Health Laboratory Network.
USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service will place scientists in labs in each of the five National Animal Health Laboratory Network regions to boost network capabilities.
USDA Chief Veterinarian Dr. Rosemary Sifford says the goal is to ensure all network labs are poised to combat the threat of diseases to protect our nation's ag and food supply.
**Arkansas Attorney General Tim Griffin ordered Syngenta to divest its ownership of approximately 160 acres in the state.
Griffin also imposed a civil penalty of $280,000 for failure to timely report foreign ownership by the Chinese state-owned company.
Arkansas Act 636 bars a "prohibited foreign-party-controlled business" from acquiring or holding public or private land in Arkansas either directly or through affiliated parties.