business news in context, analysis with attitude

•  Axios reports that the US House of Representatives "voted 247-174 on Thursday to pass a bipartisan bill that would allow an estimated 1 million undocumented farmworkers and their children to gain legal status through continued employment … Farmworkers and crop hands were designated essential workers during the pandemic. The bill would allow them to apply for legal status after working in agriculture for at least 180 days over two years."

The story notes that 12 Republican co-sponsored the bill in the House, though its future in the Senate "is uncertain."

Tom Stenzel, president-CEO of United Fresh Produce Association, said in a prepared statement, “Today, the House of Representatives took an important step towards reforming our agricultural labor system by passing the Farm Workforce Modernization Act … The legislation will stabilize our current workforce and make improvements to ensure that a future workforce is available to meet the growing needs of the fresh produce industry.

"The strong support for this measure would not have been possible without the leadership of Chairwoman Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) and Congressman Dan Newhouse (R-WA). Their efforts, aided by colleagues on both sides of the aisle, made today’s passage of the bill possible. Now our efforts turn to the Senate where we will work to further improve the bill and garner similar bipartisan support for this legislation."


•  The Daily Mail reports that "the UK government is expected to lift a ban which forbids the cultivation and sale of genetically edited plants and animals, according to reports.  

"A consultation by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has been assessing the ban on the practice and concludes tomorrow … This could potentially result in drought-resistant cattle, fatter pigs, juicier tomatoes, sweeter apples and disease-resistant crops like wheat and barley. "

At the moment, genetic modification is prohibited on all foods sold in the UK and Europe.