Dan Wheat

Central Washington Reporter
Wheat, Dan

Wyden: Obama administration well aware of local opposition to national monument

- Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., told Malheur County residents July 21 he has made it clear to President Barack Obama that there is strong local opposition to a proposed national monument in that county.

Extra-large steer named Buford stars at auction

- Buford is not your average steer. Weighing in at 2,175 pounds, he brought 83 cents per pound at Cowart’s Lebanon Auction Yard on July 21.

Potato researcher warns of new disease threat

- Some growers in Idaho are concerned about a bacterial disease of potatoes long found in Europe, called dickeya, that is now spreading throughout the U.S.

Computer scientist develops smart app for growers

- University of California-Santa Barbara computer science researcher Chandra Krintz grew up on a farm in Indiana. Now she's developing new software that will help growers run their operations more efficiently.

WDFW: Bald eagles soar, can come off state list

- The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife reports that bald eagles are soaring and no longer need to be on the state-protected list.

Proposed organic rule fuels disease concerns

- Poultry and pork producers say a proposed rule increasing outdoor access for animals in organic operations raises serious health risks to animals and the public.

Rain, temperatures increase falling number concerns

- Weather conditions have USDA Agricultural Research Service research plant molecular geneticist Camille Steber concerned about falling number potential across the Pacific Northwest.

Tax breaks for mint processors, tractor buyers under scrutiny

- Washington Lawmakers should end a tax break that benefits the mint oil industry and review one that lowers the cost of farm equipment, according to legislative auditors.

Busch touts SmartBarley program

- Idaho barley growers are participating in a worldwide program that allows them to compare their production practices with other growers to assess opportunities for improvement.

Washington slaughterhouse recalls hogs

- A Western Washington slaughterhouse has again recalled whole hogs because of salmonella.

Portland daily grain report

- Bids as of 9:30 a.m. Pacific time; subject to change.

Utah militia leader vows to ‘strike back’ in video

- William Keebler, 57, is accused of scouting a mosque, a U.S. Bureau of Land Management office and U.S. military facilities as possible targets before choosing the rural Arizona cabin.

Backyard poultry to blame for 14 Montana salmonella cases

- The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study says the cases are part of eight outbreaks that have infected 611 people in 45 states.

Central Idaho wildfire grows to 2 square miles

- About 300 firefighters supported by five helicopters are fighting the fire that is 20 percent contained.

Chipotle pulls out the stops to win back customers

- So far in July, Chipotle said, sales are improving further after the launch of its first loyalty program that rewards people for frequent visits.

California court denies push for payment during tunnel tests

- The landowners in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta had demanded payment for thousands of acres sought by the state for testing.

Beef, dairy groups question proposed organic rule

- Livestock groups say a proposed rule on organic livestock practices is based on public perception rather than science.

Wheat industry expect average protein levels in this year’s crop

- As harvest continues, Pacific Northwest farmers are worried about price discounts for high protein soft white wheat.

No progress made on Idaho field burning changes

- Idaho farm and environmental groups left their third negotiated rulemaking meeting far apart on proposed changes to the state's field burning program.

Incoming Portland mayor offers hope for rural Oregon

- Portland Mayor-elect Ted Wheeler says all the right things about bridging Oregon's urban-rural divide, but ag interests have grown used to their concerns falling largely on the deaf ears of the city's residents.

The rest of the story of a county’s threat to farmland

- The Soil and Water Conservation District’s concern is first and foremost one about what’s missing: transparency and public accountability.

State of Oregon owes counties

- The state of Oregon needs to live up to its part of the deal and manage Oregon Forest Trust Lands to produce more revenue for the counties.

Verner backed for public lands commissioner

- Mary Verner is the only candidate for commissioner of public lands with executive branch experience.

14 Meridian FFA members attend Washington Leadership Conference

- Members of the Meridian, Idaho, FFA attended the Washington Leadership Conference in the nation's capital.

New commissioner specializes in growing food barley

- The Idaho Barley Commission has appointed a new commissioner to represent Northern Idaho.

United Grain Corporation to invest millions in old PGG facilities

- United Grain Corporation has stepped in after acquiring PGG's grain assets, and pledged to invest $9 million in upgrading facilities.

Vandals use fireworks to hassle goats

- An Edwall, Wash., sheep rancher says vandals let 240 of his goats out in Issaquah, Wash.

‘Renaissance’ turns around fortunes of Oregon’s popular nut

- Willamette Valley, Ore., growers have planted between 3,000 and 4,000 acres of hazelnuts a year since 2014, pushing the total acreage past 46,000.

Montana man sentenced for Clean Water Act violations

- Joseph Robertson was charged with two counts of unauthorized discharge of pollutants into waters of the U.S. and one count of malicious mischief.

Domino’s Pizza 2nd-quarter results beat analysts’ estimates

- Shares gained almost 5 percent in morning trading on Thursday.

Changes at Dunkin drive profit, but store traffic slows

- Profit for the Canton, Massachusetts, company jumped 17 percent to $49.6 million, or 54 cents per share.

Portland daily grain report

- Bids as of 9:30 a.m. Pacific time; subject to change.

Crews make progress on wildfire east of Boise

- The human-caused blaze started Tuesday afternoon and quickly ballooned to 5 square miles.

Farmers, ranchers selling to hungry consumers

- Some small farmers say Wyoming now has the best local artisan food law in the country, the Food Freedom Act.

Shareholders approved Dow-DuPont merger

- Dow and DuPont were pushed by activist investors to break up or find other ways to revitalize their businesses. They agreed to merge in December in an all-stock deal valued at about $62 billion.

Clinton’s short list of running mates includes Vilsack

- Agriculture secretary, labor secretary and Virginia senator are front-runners.

Train rams wheat truck at E. Oregon crossing

- The train, which was traveling at 30 mph, had sounded its horn, but could not stop in time before hitting the truck.

Interior bill lays groundwork for addressing Western issues

- Agricultural interests representing key commodities across the Northwest say the Interior funding bill that recently passed the U.S. House has several provisions that they support.

Oregon farmer wins zoning dispute

- An Albany, Ore., farmer has won a land-use dispute. The Oregon Court of Appeals has ruled that his straw-compressing facility does not require a conditional-use permit from the county.

Onion growers confirm success of applying herbicide through drip system

- Idaho and Oregon onion growers are reporting good results from applying a popular herbicide through drip irrigation systems. This is the first year they have been able to do that.

Vilsack on Clinton’s list of potential running mates?

- With his Midwestern ties, experience in elected office, policy record in Washington and strong links to rural America, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack could bring some key advantages to the Democratic ticket.

TV personality-avocado farmer speaks at GOP convention

- Of the avocado-growing business, Kimberlin Brown said, “I’ve seen firsthand our domestic market flooded with imports that harmed local farmers and even drove some out of business.”

Crews bolster fire lines on blaze east of Boise

- The fire that started Tuesday quickly ballooned to 5 square miles and destroyed a barn and two outbuildings.

S. Idaho woman pleads guilty to felony grand theft

- Authorities say Zamora wrote a $6,500 check to state brand inspector Justin Archer earlier this year and that they split the money.

Beekeepers urged to enter honey in awards competition

- Beekeepers are urged to enter their honeys in the annual Good Food Awards competition by July 31. The awards are meant to recognize good farming practices, said a University of California-Davis researcher is coordinating th...

Washington tribe joins legal challenge over modified salmon

- The tribe says it is worried the genetically modified salmon can escape and harm wild salmon runs.

Port of Morrow to expand land application for wastewater

- Work will begin later this year to distribute a portion of wastewater from the Port of Morrow to Madison Ranches for irrigation.

Officials approve egg farm that will use cage-free barns

- The company had initially proposed a 6 million-bird operation.

Group clones California giant trees to combat climate change

- The arborists clipped off tips of young branches to be hand-delivered across the country, cloned in a lab and eventually planted in a forest in Oregon.

PNW cherry harvest enters final stretch

- Cherry growers in the Pacific Northwest have enjoyed relatively good weather and fruit quality, but crop compression kept prices and grower returns low in mid-season.