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Agribusiness

Nowhere to go but up

Farmers enjoy record-setting year in 2010 Compared to the disaster that was 2009, this year was a banner one for Mississippi’s agriculture community. In the end, there was nowhere to go but up. Still, the estimated total production value for the state’s crops set a new record in 2010, and some commodities posted their best season in years, especially catfish ...

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IHL: Unemployment slowing economic recovery

JACKSON — The Jan. 2011 issue of the “Mississippi Economic Review and Outlook,” published by the Center for Policy Research and Planning of the Institutions of Higher Learning (IHL), is now available online at www.mississippi.edu/URC. This issue presents the state economic forecast for 2011 to 2015, and includes detailed employment forecasts by sector. Regional, national and international developments impacting the ...

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MSU merging departments in cost-cutting move

STARKVILLE — Mississippi State University is merging the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and the Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology to promote cost savings and further strengthen research efforts. The faculty-led Select Committee on Efficiencies and Innovations made the department merger recommendation after consulting with departmental faculty from both units. “Each department has a strong research program,” said ...

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Sanderson sets new annual sales record of $1.9B

LAUREL — Sanderson Farms Inc. saw net sales for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2010 of $529.1 million, compared with $469 million for the same period a year ago For the quarter, the company reported net income of $47.8 million, or $2.08 per share, compared with $19.8 million, or $0.95 per share for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2009. Net ...

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Scientists develop new wood-based products

STARKVILLE — Mississippi State University scientists have found a new way to turn wood into highly absorbent charcoal and automobile parts. While wood has been used to manufacture charcoal since the early 1600s, the new technique can create charcoal and other carbon-based products with a higher absorption capacity. Charcoal has been used widely to treat water and clean up chemicals, ...

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Researchers: Grow oysters in suspended bags

BATON ROUGE, La. — LSU and Auburn University researchers say a new approach to growing oysters – in mesh bags strung between posts – could boost harvests and create jobs. The “long-line system” is used to grow oysters commercially in Australia and now it is being used at the Fisheries Research Laboratory in Grand Isle. John Supan, an oyster expert ...

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US sweet potato farmers look to European market

RALEIGH, N.C. — With U.S. consumption growing slowly, farmers have found a market for the vitamin-packed, cholesterol-free sweet potato on the tables of health-conscious Europeans. Between 2005 and 2009, the value of U.S. sweet potato exports more than doubled to $51.4 million, with much of that growth coming from Europe, especially Great Britain. The value of exports to the United ...

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US Senate: Food safety bill to exempt small farms

WASHINGTON — Some small farms would be exempt from government efforts to prevent foodborne illness under a Senate agreement on food safety legislation announced Thursday. The food safety bill now pending in the Senate would give the Food and Drug Administration more authority to recall tainted products, increase inspections of food processors and require producers to follow stricter standards for ...

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Catfish industry touting 'Today Show' investigation

WASHINGTON — The catfish industry is pointing to a recent airing of NBC’s “Today Show” as more proof the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s inspection system for imported seafood is weak. Many Americans are eating foreign catfish and other seafood tainted with chemicals that could cause cancer, birth defects and other serious health problems, according to an investigation aired Nov. ...

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Row crops in, but weather still a factor

ACROSS MISSISSIPPI — According to the National Agricultural Statistics Service in Mississippi, there were 5.9 days suitable for fieldwork for the week ending Nov. 14. That might have been more time than farmers needed as the row crop harvest is complete, AgFax.com reports. Most areas across the state received rainfall toward the end of the week. However, more rain is ...

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