In today’s Ag News Roundup, genetics linked to air pollution, northwest beef heading back to China, irrigation efficiency to save money, researchers develop edible food wrap, and another wolf pack kills livestock in Washington state.
OSU Finds Genetic Link to Air Pollution and Defects
Researchers at Oregon State University have found that zebrafish exposed to benzopyrene, a chemical associated with air pollution, can pass physical and behavioral deficits to their descendants through heritable chromosome changes. The study suggests that exposure to carcinogens can affect generations, even if they were not exposed themselves.
U.S. Beef Heading Back to China
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has reached an agreement with Chinese officials to allow U.S. beef exports. The announcement will bring a return of northwest beef exports to China since 2003 when China put a ban on U.S. beef imports. Prior to the ban, the U.S. supplies 70 percent of the country’s beef.
Irrigation Efficiency Gets a Boost
For nine landowners between Heppner and Lexington, Oregon, a new gravity-fed irrigation pipeline will help save water and electricity. The pipeline is going in along a nine-mile stretch of Willow Creek after years of planning and design. The water will help efficiently irrigate pasture as well as crops.
Researchers Develop Edible Food Wrap
Oregon State University researchers have developed a water-resistant, antimicrobial, and edible plastic-like wrap that can be used to extend the life of meats, cheeses, and vegetables. The film, which is similar to plastic wrap, is made from a fiber found in crab and shrimp shells as well as materials extracted from wood pulp. The plastic-like material can inhibit bacteria growth and protect against moisture.
Sherman Wolf Pack Kills Calf in Northeast Washington
The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife has determined that the Sherman wolf pack, rather than the Profanity Peak pack, is to blame for killing a calf in northeast Washington. Department policy states that a pack must be culled when it attacks livestock more than three times in 30 days. This is the first attack by the Sherman pack.