• Last week the U.S. Surface Transportation Board ordered BNSF Railway and Canadian Pacific Railway to direct all railcars to make fertilizer deliveries to avoid planting delays this spring.

    The railroads were ordered to report their delivery plans by last Friday along with weekly status reports on deliveries for the next six-weeks.

    National Farmers Union President Roger Johnson says farmers have faced prolonged delays in transporting Ag commodities by BNSF and CP but this decision will ensure timely delivery of much-needed fertilizer for farmers.

  • Purdue University Researchers infected fresh spinach and ground beef with nearly 10 million cells of E. coli and treated the food with a combination of three types of viruses selected for their ability to kill E. coli quickly and efficiently.

    The treatment killed about 99 percent of the bacteria within 24 hours in ground beef stored at room temperature. For refrigerated ground beef the number of E. coli decreased by nearly 68 percent.

    Researchers say this treatment is a way of harnessing the natural antibacterial properties of phages to limit E. coli and other important foodborne pathogens and will make contaminated foods safer.