KUNC     Tri States Public Radio

         

(Bob Peterson/Flickr)
(Bob Peterson/Flickr)

Farmers could be temporarily prohibited from applying pesticides at certain times of the year if proposed new environmental regulations are adopted.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday proposed limiting the application of what it calls “acutely toxic pesticides” during times when flowers are in bloom and in areas where farmers have paid for bees to help pollinate their crops. Commercial beekeeping hives account for about 90 percent of the nation’s bees, according to an expert cited by the Associated Press.

The restrictions would pertain to products applied directly to crop leaves with active ingredients determined to have “high toxicity for bees,” the EPA said.

(Mike Mozart/Flickr)
(Mike Mozart/Flickr)

Walmart, one of the country’s largest food retailers, is asking its suppliers to use less antibiotics in farm animals and to treat animals “humanely throughout their lives.”

While not mandatory, the guidelines for suppliers ask producers to change their practices. When Walmart makes requests, many in the food industry listen.

The company is asking its meat producers and egg suppliers to treat animals with antibiotics only to prevent and treat disease and not to promote growth, Walmart said in a release. It is also asking suppliers to publicly report their antibiotic use annually.

The U.S. country of origin labeling law requires packages of meat and seafood to tell where an animal was born, raised, and slaughtered. (Grant Gerlock/Harvest Public Media)
The U.S. country of origin labeling law requires packages of meat and seafood to tell where an animal was born, raised, and slaughtered. (Grant Gerlock/Harvest Public Media)

Meat sold in the U.S. has to have a label telling in which country it was born, raised, and slaughtered. But the World Trade Organization confirmed Monday that those country of origin labels (COOL) on meat sold in the U.S. violate international law.

Mexico and Canada have fought COOL from the beginning. They claim that country of origin labels put their cattle producers at a competitive disadvantage.

Pages