Washington

Impact

Government impacts business. And it impacts horticulture businesses in ways that it may not understand until its too late. That's why our team on Capital Hill exists to share the industry's voice and keep you informed of exactly what's happening as soon as -- if not before -- it does. The Washington Impact newsletter and briefings are exactly what you need to stay abreast of what Uncle Sam is up to.

Jennifer Gray December 05 2017

The AmericanHort and HRI research staff were recently invited to meet with scientists at the USDA Agricultural Research Station in Wooster, Ohio to learn more about the collaborative work taking place there. The trip included robust discussions with five researchers, conversations with multiple post-doctoral and graduate students, visits to several labs, and tours of three nurseries.
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Jill Calabro, Ph.D. December 05 2017

A research report to be released soon points to a connection between fungicide usage and prevalence of Nosema, a fungal pathogen, in bumblebees. The study is unique in that it is the first to consider multiple factors on a landscape scale associated with bumblebee decline. In total, 24 such variables were factored into the analysis and included things such as habitat, land use, and pesticide us...

Jill Calabro, Ph.D. December 05 2017

After two years of consideration, the EU recently approved a five-year license renewal for glyphosate. Glyphosate was given another look following a 2015 report by the World Health Organization (WHO) cancer agency that declared the herbicide a probable carcinogen. Germany was reportedly the last holdout but voted in favor of extending the license, against the wishes of France. The fight will co...

Craig Regelbrugge December 05 2017

AmericanHort continues to urge Congress to pass immediate H-2B cap relief. We are concerned that the first-half fiscal year cap could be reached later this month. As of November 28, the Department of Homeland Security had received petitions for over 22,000 H-2B workers for the first half of fiscal 2018. Each half of the fiscal year is capped at 33,000 H-2B visas.
 
While we c...

Tal Coley December 05 2017

Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue continued his nationwide outreach effort last week visiting Francis Roses in Litchfield Park, Arizona as part of a tour that started in Mesa with Arizona Department of Agriculture officials.
 
Francis Roses, a member of AmericanH...

Tal Coley December 05 2017

The Senate passed their sweeping tax reform package in the early morning hours of December 2, moving tax reform one step closer to law. Senate Republican leaders worked diligently to get the votes necessary for passage, as there were a number of Republican senators on the fe...

Jill Calabro, Ph.D. November 21 2017

Your input is very important to researchers! A research collaboration led by Dr. David Byrne, Texas A&M, will be submitting a proposal to conduct research on the use of remote sensing to assess plant traits.
 
These researchers would like to better gauge the interest of the industry in using remote sensor technology for monitoring purposes (such as for abiotic and/or dise...

Jill Calabro, Ph.D. November 21 2017

Environment Secretary of the United Kingdom Michael Gove has indicated that the UK will no longer object to a proposed ban of neonicotinoids in the European Union.
 
The announcement was made recently and follows a proposed expansion of the ban put in place in 2013. The original ban introduced a moratorium on clothianidin, imidacloprid, and thiamethoxam use on outdoor floweri...

Craig Regelbrugge November 21 2017

On November 16, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Army Corps of Engineers (the agencies) released a proposed rule to change the effective date of the 2015 Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule. The proposed rule would delay the effective date of the regulation for two years. The delay gives the agencies additional time to finalize a rule to rescind the Obama-era regulation an...

Craig Regelbrugge November 21 2017

Dr. Steve Bronars, an economist who advises AmericanHort and the Agriculture Coalition for Immigration Reform, has analyzed the just-released USDA Farm Labor Survey results and has provided us with a chart of the expected 2018 Adverse Effect Wage Rates for those using the H-2A visa program. These ne...

In this segment of Charlie's Angle, Charlie clarifies a couple of things from his mid-year economic outlook webinar and emphasizes that there is still time to make strategic investments in your business before the next economic downturn. These investments can be technology-related, of course, and what makes ...

In May 2016 the U.S. Department of Labor issued a final final rule doubling the salary level for "white collar" employees exempt from overtime pay, as well as the role of the overtime exemption for agricultural workers. We will discuss efforts to block the new overtime rule and possible strategies for employers to comply with the rule when it takes effect on December 1, 2016. From the...