Tom Vilsack

Feds Cave, Remove Sustainability From Dietary Guidelines

Panel had recommended ‘plant-based’ diets

Piles of fresh produce (Blend Images via AP Images)The Departments of Agriculture and Health and Human Services announced they would not include sustainability in their nutrition guidelines for Americans, backing away from a report that recommended plant-based diets in order to help forestall climate change.

Michelle Obama Pushing Ban on Junk Food Advertising in Schools

No brand names on vending machines, trashcans, screen savers

First lady Michelle Obama and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced on Tuesday the introduction of “school wellness standards” that will dictate how food can be marketed in cafeterias and on school grounds and heavily restrict snacks deemed “unhealthy” by the federal government.

Feds Spend $5 Million for ‘Farm to School’ Projects

Program part of Michelle Obama’s Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act

USDA's Farm to School awards $5.2 Million in grants, will teach children how to raise animals that will be used in school lunchesThe U.S. Department of Agriculture has allotted over $5 million in grants for “Farm to School” projects, including nearly $100,000 for grade school children in Montana to raise animals that will later appear on their lunch trays.

Ethanol Lobby Calls for Retraction of AP Story

AG Sec Vilsack: ‘a number of errors and inaccuracies’

The biofuel industry is calling for the retraction of an Associated Press investigation that pins severe environmental damages on the expanded production of corn ethanol in the Midwest.

Raul Grijalva Tries to Block Energy Exploration During Shutdown

Calls for halt to energy company usage of federal land until shutdown ends

A Democratic member of Congress is using the government shutdown to pressure the Department of the Interior to prohibit oil and gas exploration on federal land. Energy companies should not be able to use federal lands if those lands are closed to hikers and campers, according to Rep. Raul Grijalva (D., Ariz.), the co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.

Down the Hatch

Cabinet members and White House officials skirt law forbidding federal employees from campaign activities

United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) secretary Tom Vilsack recently engaged in conduct that may have violated the Hatch Act, according to documents obtained by the Washington Free Beacon. Vilsack’s conduct is the latest in a series of potential Hatch Act violations by Obama administration officials.