NAWG Weekly Updates, January 09, 2020

2020 NAWG/USW Winter Conference – January 13-17, 2020
Next week the 2020 NAWG/USW Winter Conference will take place at the Grand Hyatt in Washington, D.C. A schedule and more details can be found here. The Conference will begin with Part II of the Bayer Leadership Program, followed by policy committee meetings, a hill day, and conclude on Friday, January 17th with the NAWG Board of Directors meeting. NAWG and the National Wheat Foundation will also hold its fourth annual wheat educational event on Thursday, January 16, 2019 from 4:00pm. to 6:30pmEST in Kennedy Caucus room (Russell 325).

NAWG CEO Speaks at National 4-H Ag Summit
On January 10, 2020, NAWG CEO Chandler Goule will be a speaker at the 4-H National Youth Summit on Agri-Science 2020. Goule participated in a career panel where he highlighted his experience and participation in 4-H and how it sent him on his current career path.

Senate Finance Votes USMCA Out of Committee
On Tuesday, January 07, 2020, the Senate Finance Committee, in a vote of 25-3, sent the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) to the full Senate. In regard to next steps, some other Senate Committees have been deemed jurisdiction over the trade deal and are expected to also report it out next week. NAWG continually remains in contact with Senate offices about the importance of moving forward quickly with USMCA.

USDA, FDA, EPA Launch Website for Biotechnology Regulation
On January 9, 2020, in recognition of January 2020 as National Biotechnology Month, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) launched a Unified Website for Biotechnology Regulation. The Website streamlines information about the three regulatory agencies charged with overseeing agriculture biotechnology products and is part President Donald J. Trump’s Executive Order on Modernizing the Regulatory Framework for Agricultural Biotechnology Products.

Washington Post’s 2020 Trends: Gene-Edited Food
On December 26, 2019, The Washington Post published a 2020 trends piece, in which they included a section on food – with a heavy focus on gene-edited food. The piece was written by Laura Reiley, who attended Innovature’s “Saving Food, Fighting Food Waste” event in July. After the event, Innovature representatives followed up with Laura to discuss a consumer trends piece and worked to connect her with a handful of companies with products in the pipeline to provide additional background. The resulting piece mentions both non-browning potatoes and lettuce, as well as gene-edited tilapia, using language that follows closely with Innovature’s messaging, describing gene editing as “essentially accelerating the selection of desirable traits that Gregor Mendel achieved via crossbreeding his peas.”