United States

A Washington, DC Meals on Wheels program makes its final rounds. Across the country, Meals on Wheels programs are slashing staff, reducing the number of meals delivered or shutting down as a result of sequestration.

Sequester stalls Meals on Wheels programs

by Robert Samuels Washington Post May 31, 2013

For almost 30 years, First United Methodist Church of Hyattsville has delivered 10 meals a week to homebound seniors who live nearby. But with the sequester leading to a reduction of federal funds next month, the church’s skeletal staff has come to a sad conclusion....

Monsanto shares fall as South Korea joins pause in wheat imports

by Steven Mufson Washington Post May 31, 2013

Investors drove down the price of Monsanto shares by 4 percent on Friday as South Korea joined Japan in suspending imports of U.S. wheat after an unapproved strain of genetically modified wheat was discovered in a field in eastern Oregon....

Unapproved genetically modified wheat from Monsanto found in Oregon field

by Steven Mufson Washington Post May 30, 2013

Japan, the largest market for U.S. wheat exports, suspended imports from the United States and canceled a major purchase of white wheat on Thursday after the recent discovery of unapproved genetically modified wheat in an 80-acre field in Oregon....

Richest 20 percent get half the overall savings from US tax breaks, Congressional Budget Office says

by Lori Montgomery Washington Post May 29, 2013

The 10 largest breaks in the U.S. tax code will save taxpayers more than $900 billion this year, with a little more than half the benefits flowing to the richest 20 percent of households, congressional budget analysts said Wednesday....

Disability is an important risk factor for food insecurity

by Alisha Coleman-Jensen and Mark Nord, USDA Economic Research Service May 29, 2013

In 2011, close to 15 percent of U.S. households were food insecure. At some time during the year, these households lacked adequate food for one or more household members due to insufficient money or other resources for food. Disability has emerged as one of the strongest known factors that affect a ...

Needing pork, China is to buy a US supplier, Smithfield Foods

by Michael J de la Merced and David Barboza New York Times May 29, 2013

Demand for pork in China reflects its booming economy and rising middle class. But that rapidly growing appetite has strained its food production systems, leading to breakdowns and a number of food safety scandals....

Food stamp program faces cuts as farm bill takes shape

by Mark Steil Minnesota Public Radio May 26, 2013

The U.S. Senate took up the farm bill last week but has yet to take a final vote on the legislation. Funding for food stamps is one area of contention....

Seeking food ingredients that aren’t gene-altered

by Stephanie Strom New York Times May 26, 2013

Food companies big and small are struggling to replace genetically modified ingredients with conventional ones.Pressure is growing to label products made from genetically modified organisms, or “G.M.O.” In Connecticut, Vermont and Maine, at least one chamber of the state legislature has approved...

Half of America in poverty—and it’s creeping upward

by Paul Buchheit AlterNet May 26, 2013

The Census Bureau has reported that 15% of Americans live in poverty. A shocking figure. But it's actually much worse. Inequality is spreading like a shadowy disease through our country, infecting more and more households, and leaving a shrinking number of financially secure families to maintain the...

Pivoting from a war footing, Obama acts to curtail drones

by Peter Baker New York Times May 23, 2013

WASHINGTON — Nearly a dozen years after the hijackings that transformed America, President Obama said Thursday that it was time to narrow the scope of the grinding battle against terrorists and begin the transition to a day when the country will no longer be on a war footing....