January 02, 2024 Issue


Storied US Steel to Be Acquired for More than $14 Billion by Nippon Steel

U.S. Steel, the Pittsburgh steel producer that played a key role in the nation's industrialization, is being acquired by Nippon Steel in an all-cash deal valued at approximately $14.1 billion. MORE


Source: MN Chamber

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Europe And US Extend Trade Truce Over Trump Tariffs

US tariffs on steel and aluminium and the EU's retaliation on goods including motorcycles and whisky will be suspended until the end of March 2025. They were originally imposed when Donald Trump was president on national security grounds. But they were paused under Joe Biden's administration. The deferment will allow President Biden to keep his EU allies onside. But because they have been paused and not abolished, he will appear to be tough on trade for a domestic audience. More

Source: Constitution Partners

Industry-Leading Organizations are Uniting Against a Proposed "Can Tax"

The Consumer Brands Association's vice president of supply chain, Tom Madrecki, shares why leading domestic manufacturers, food retailers and agricultural stakeholders are urging the International Trade Commission to reject the petition from steelmaker Cleveland-Cliffs proposing import tariffs on tinplate steel. MORE


Source: CBA

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FDA Proposal Would Transform Human Foods Program to Enhance Prevention, Responsiveness

U.S. Food and Drug Administration commissioner Robert M. Califf, M.D., announced a proposal to restructure the Human Foods Program and Office of Regulatory Affairs (ORA) to better serve the industry and consumers. MORE


Source: FoodProcessing.com

State Leaders Tout ‘Earned Sick and Safe Time’ Law That Will Take Effect Next Month

Sick-time policies are set to change for workers in Minnesota, and it doesn’t matter if those workers are part-time or full-time. Lt. Governor Peggy Flanagan was joined on Monday afternoon by those who authored the legislation along with Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry Commissioner Nicole Blissenbach, worker advocates and a small business owner. The new law set to go into effect on Jan. 1, 2024, means those working in Minnesota will be able to earn one hour of sick time for every 30 hours worked, adding up to 48 hours a year. MORE


Source: Fluence Media

Let It Fly: MN Officially Has a New Flag 

Run it up the flagpole: Minnesota will have a new flag with a shape that resembles — well, itself — along with an eight-point North Star and a single, light blue block to the other side. MORE


Source: MN Chamber

Wisconsin GAAP Balance at $6.7 Billion

According to a release from Governor Evers, Wisconsin ended the 2022-23 fiscal year with a $6.7 billion positive balance, an increase of 40 percent over the end of 2021-22 fiscal year. The announcement comes with today’s release of the state’s Annual Comprehensive Financial Report (ACFR).

Source: The Wheeler Report

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WI Supreme Court Orders New Legislative Maps in Redistricting Case Brought by Democrats

From Associated Press: The liberal-controlled Wisconsin Supreme Court overturned Republican-drawn legislative maps on Friday and ordered that new district boundary lines be drawn as Democrats had urged in a redistricting case they hope will weaken GOP majorities. The ruling comes less than a year before the 2024 election in a battleground state where four of the six past presidential elections have been decided by fewer than 23,000 votes, and Republicans have built large majorities in the Legislature under maps they drew over a decade ago. The court ruled 4-3 in favor of Democrats who argued that the legislative maps are unconstitutional because districts drawn aren’t contiguous. New maps are likely to be unveiled in about two months. MORE


Source: IMA

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WI DNR Halts Efforts to Set PFAS Groundwater Standards, Concedes Legislative Action Will Be Required for Adoption of Proposed Standards

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) and Gov. Tony Evers halted rulemaking to establish Chapter NR 140 groundwater standards for four per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) after determining state law requires legislative action to adopt the standards as proposed. In 2017, the Legislature and Gov. Scott Walker adopted the Wisconsin Regulations from the Executive In Need of Scrutiny Act, more commonly known by its acronym (the REINS Act). MORE

Source: Michael Best

Here are 5 New Illinois Laws that May Raise Some Eyebrows

From NBC Chicago: More than 300 new laws will hit the books in Illinois in the new year, and while many of them work to defend the rights of consumers, change educational policies in the state and more, there are a few that are a bit more unique. While it was already illegal to text and to talk on the phone without a hands-free device, HB 2431 will also prohibit you from having your camera on during videoconferences on Zoom and similar apps. MORE


Source: IMA

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DATCP Resilient Food Systems Infrastructure Program Grant Applications Open

The WI Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) is accepting applications for the WI Resilient Food Systems Infrastructure (RFSI) Program to expand capacity and infrastructure for the aggregation, processing, manufacturing, storing, transporting, wholesaling, and distribution of locally- and regionally-produced food products, including specialty crops, dairy, grains for human consumption, aquaculture, and other value-added food products.

A total of $27 million will be awarded through a competitive grant process. Grant applications are due by 5 p.m. on Wednesday, March 6. The RFSI Program has two grant tracks, the Infrastructure Grant and the Equipment-Only Grant. Applicants may only apply for one track.

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RFSI grant project proposals must expand middle-of-the food supply chain capacity for locally- and regionally-produced foods and offer more and better market opportunities to small and mid-sized agricultural producers. This includes those who may not have access to value-added opportunities or processing to meet market demand for premium or value-added products, such as underserved producers.

An informational webinar about the RFSI grants will be held at 11 a.m. on January 9, 2024 via Zoom. To access the webinar registration, learn more about the program, or sign up for automatic email updates about the RFSI Program, please visit here.

Source: DATCP

California Governor Signs Bill to Ban Four Food and Beverage Ingredients

California Gov. Gavin Newsom officially signed into law Assembly Bill 418, which prohibits the use of four food and drink ingredients to be used in any products sold in the state effective Jan. 1, 2027. The four ingredients — brominated vegetable oil, potassium bromate, propylparaben and red dye No. 3 — had been targeted as dangerous to human health by the authors of the bill and their supporters, and Newsom stated in his announcement of the signing that the ban was a positive step forward for public health “until the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reviews and establishes national updated safety levels for these additives.” MORE

Source: FoodProcessing.com

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Save the Date! 2024 Meetings & Events

View 2024 MWFPA Sponsorship Opportunities - HERE

January - Friday/Weckel & MWFPA Scholarship application period open!

February 15 - Safety Seminar hosted at The Lodge at Mauston in Mauston, WI

February & March - Members contact MWFPA staff with directory listing updates

April 1 - MWFPA Scholarship Applications due

April 11 - Sanitation Seminar hosted at Food + Farm Exploration Center in Plover

May 1 - Friday/Weckel Scholarship Applications due

June 5 - MWFPA Spring Summit hosted at Kalahari Convention Center

June 6 - MWFPA Annual Scramble hosted at Trappers Turn

July/August/September - Raw Products/Haltvick meetings - dates TBA

October 8 - Sporting Clays Classic hosted at Woods & Meadow in Warrens, WI

December 3 - Processing Crops Conference

December 3-5 - MWFPA Convention & Expo

Kalahari Resort & Convention Center, Wisconsin Dells




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