John Block: Issues

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block It could be announced any time, but we still don’t know. Will the EPA provide a waiver to allow the sale of E15 ethanol blended fuel during the summer? Right now, the sale of E15 is restricted June 1 through… Read More
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Jack Block: This and That

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block President Trump and Conservative Members of Congress have been trying to cut back on wasteful spending. The President wants a more efficient government by reforming civil service rules – a “merit system”… Read More
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SNAP Trafficking and Other Civil Monetary Penalties Edge Higher

USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) may impose civil monetary penalties (CMP) on retailers that are determined to have violated Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) regulations.  These penalties are most frequently imposed against… Read More
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Synthetic Flavors’ Safety Questioned – Strategy Needed to Address Consequence

Food manufacturers using the following seven (7) synthetic flavoring substances and adjuvants should take note that the safety of these ingredients is being challenged: Benzophenone (a/k/a diphenylketone), Ethyl acrylate, Eugenyl methyl ether (a/k/a… Read More
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A Welcome Fresh Perspective at the CPSC

After a nearly nine month delay, the United States Senate earlier this week finally voted to confirm the nomination of Dana Baiocco to be a commissioner of the CPSC. With this vote, one of the strange aberrations of the Trump Administration ceases: t… Read More
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Jack Block: Trade and the Farm Bill

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block I was on the farm in Illinois last week. I went into the coffee shop, talked to neighbors, and all the questions were about a trade war and the farm bill legislation. Almost everyone in the county is a Trump su… Read More
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FDA Announces Medical Device Quality System Regulation Change

FDA recently announced a potential massive overhaul to its Medical Device regulations.  Specifically, the agency intends to “harmonize and modernize” its medical device Quality System Regulation (21 C.F.R. Part 820) with an international consens… Read More
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Federal Crop Insurance AIPs: Some Misconceptions about Underwriting Gains

Debate over the 2018 Farm Bill, likely to start in earnest this week with House consideration of H.R. 2, may focus sharp attention on the question of whether taxpayer costs for Federal Crop Insurance are reasonable and supportable.  At least five am… Read More
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Selling Too Much Food Hot? SNAP-Authorized You’re Not!

Small grocery stores and specialty retail food stores that sell hot foods are facing an unprecedented threat to their businesses.  Not from competition or due to rising costs.  Instead, thousands of small fish and seafood markets in impoverished ur… Read More
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Jack Block: Down on the Farm

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block I was wondering if spring would ever come. We had snow on the farm just 3 weeks ago. Suddenly, things changed. The sun came out, and it began to dry and warm the soil. I’m on the farm this week, and almost ov… Read More
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