State agriculture and health officials are warning Georgians to take safety precautions while attending state fairs and other events this fall due to human infections from a flu virus normally found in pigs.
Federal officials are partnering with state agencies to conserve land in Southeast Georgia recently hit by large wildfires. The agreement provides $8 million dollars for the protection and enhancement of Clinch County's Arabia Bay.
A state audit released last month said the Georgia Department of Agriculture isn’t doing enough inspections of the highest-risk food processing plants in the state. The department is changing that this month by starting to inspect the riskiest plants more often.
Prison inmates are working on a Vidalia onion farm in southeast Georgia. It’s part of a state program to fill empty farm jobs. The ‘transitional’ inmates packing onions at the Wayne Durrence Farm in Glennville are getting ready to return to the outside world. A part of their paychecks goes to the state to defray incarceration costs.
A Southeast Georgia gas station chain is taking Georgia's Agriculture Commissioner to court over signs for gas prices. Parker's Market chain owner, Greg Parker, says Commissioner Gary Black's office told the chain not to post a lower gas price for people using the chain's debit card. Parker says, Black is overstepping his authority.
Some Georgia cafeterias are getting ahead of expected federal guidelines that virtually would banish the potato from school lunches. The US Agriculture Department is formulating a proposal that would drastically reduce the humble spud from school cafeterias. The new guidelines aren't expect to take effect until next year, but coastal Glynn County schools already has started to serve potatoes just once each week.
Dwindling jobs and the lingering economic slowdown have led to a big jump in the number of Georgians on food stamps. US Agriculture Department officials say, there are now 1.8 million people receiving food stamps in the state, a 42% rise from two years ago. Those numbers leave out people eligible for but not using the benefit.
At least three major grocery store chains are recalling certain packages of ground beef due to possible E. coli contamination. The recalls at Winn-Dixie, Publix Super Markets and Kroger mainly in the southeastern U.S. stem from meat from National Beef Packaging Company of Dodge City, Kansas. The recalls affect products sold mainly in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, South Carolina and Tennessee, but the meat could have been distributed nationwide.
Gov. Nathan Deal has received the results of a Department of Agriculture survey of farmers to determine whether growers are suffering a labor shortage. Deal’s spokeswoman said the governor will review the data and comment on it next week.
Georgia's Saxby Chambliss is joining 12 other US Senators in calling on Food and Drug Administration officials to relax seafood advice for pregnant women. The Senators say, the agency's guidelines to avoid fish because of mercury are not consistent with new federal dietary recommendations.