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 Agriculture News


     UNION CENTER, S.D. (AP) - A group of women in western North Dakota is organizing an event for ranch women in western South Dakota dealing with devastation from an early October blizzard.
     The Bowman-based group called Rural Women in America will hold the event Saturday, Feb. 15, at the community center in Union Center. It will include speakers, musical entertainment, cooking and home decorating sessions, shopping and dinner. Day care services are being provided free of charge.
     Spokeswoman Camie Janikowski says the group is about women helping women, and the one-day event is an opportunity for the group to support ranch women in South Dakota.  The Oct. 4-5 blizzard brought rain and then up to 4 feet of snow to western South Dakota, killing more than 40,000 cattle, sheep and horses.


     TULSA, Okla. (AP) - U.S. farmers say the federal government's recent announcement that it wants to ban unhealthy trans fats could mean big things for the nation's canola industry.  Trans fats add to food's texture and shelf life, but researchers say they contribute to 20,000 heart attacks and 7,000 deaths annually in the U.S.
     Canola is primarily harvested for an oil that is low in saturated fat and used as a replacement for trans fats. Oreos are now made with canola oil.  The crop has only been in the U.S. for about two decades, but production has rocketed from a few hundred acres to around 1.7 million acres in 2012.  There's also a financial incentive. At around $10 a bushel, canola can fetch a higher price than wheat's $6 to $7 a bushel.


     WORTHINGTON, Minn. (AP) - Minnesota's pork industry is on edge over a deadly hog disease.  It's called porcine epidemic diarrhea virus, and it was first reported in Minnesota last May. It doesn't make humans sick, but Minnesota Public Radio News reports the disease is shrinking herds and could mean higher pork prices at the grocery store.
     MPR reports the number of cases in Minnesota has jumped by almost two-thirds in the past month. The disease has been found in about 300 hog barns around the state.  With no proven vaccine on the market, farmers are concentrating on keeping the virus out of their barns.

     (Copyright 2014 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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