The Senate is back in session after a two-week break. The Senate failed to limit debate on a voluntary GMO-labeling bill last month, and supporters are vowing to try again.  The question is whether enough middle ground can be found to get farm-state Democrats and state’s-rights Republicans to vote for the bill. Talks on how to move forward could begin this week. Time is an issue as there are fewer than 90 days before Vermont’s mandatory GMO labeling law takes effect.

As commodity prices fall, one of the first places farmers cut costs is purchasing new equipment. A February report from Rabobank anticipates commodity prices will stabilize to near break-even levels. By 2017, they say the crop cycle should swing upward, and that will lead to a return of equipment purchasing. Rabobank says growers have been reducing equipment purchases for two years. They anticipate seed companies will gain the most traction as farmers continue to try to cut costs while increasing yields year-over-year.