US scientist discover natural food protection agent
US scientists have discovered a naturally occurring agent that kills bacteria and could significantly prolong the shelf-life of meat, fish, eggs and dairy products. Researchers at the University of Minnesota have reported the discovery of “bisin” – a naturally occurring compound produced by some types of bacteria. It attacks and kills bacteria such E. coli, salmonella and listeria. Microbiologist Dan Sullivan told the Sunday Times: “It seems to be much better than anything which has gone before. It doesn’t compromise nutrient quality – we are not adding a chemical, we are adding an ingredient.” The substance has been patented in the US, and the researchers say foods like milk, sausages and sandwiches containing the agent could be on the shelves within three years.
Farmers need stronger rights in mining negotiations
Farmers need greater rights in negotiations with mining and coal seam gas companies, the National Farmers Federation belives. In a press release issued yesterday NFF president Jock Laurie said “open and clear access agreements are needed. Farmers were often unaware of their rights and overwhelmed confused and under stress during negotiations. “The NFF is calling for tighter controls around land access agreements so that mining and CSG companies must abide by the terms set, and farmers have a greater understanding of the negotiation process and are able to seek a more equitable outcome,” he said.
Towns larger than 1000 people to be protected from mining
The Queensland Government yesterday declared that urban areas in the state will be off limits to mining exploration. A new policy has been endorsed by Cabinet that will prevent mining exploration from occurring within a 2km buffer of urban land. However the restrictions will not apply to townships with populations of less than 1000 people. “Premier Bligh needs to extend the same level of certainty to all Queensland towns,” Friends of the Earth spokesman Shani Tager said. “Towns are the lifeblood of regional Queensland and losing them isn’t worth the quick buck.”
Abbott backs down on landholders right to say 'no'
After backing farmers rights to lock the gate to coal seam gas and gas mining companies last week, Federal Opposition leader Tony Abbott retreated from the position yesterday. On Alan Jones’ Sydney radio program last Thursday, Mr Abbot was asked if landholders should have the last word on whether anyone can enter their property. “If you don't want something to happen on your land, you ought to have a right to say no,” he said. “Now, okay, under certain circumstances the Government ought to be able to resume your land but it has got to be done at a fair price.” The comments sparked praise from farmland protection groups, outrage from the mining industry and talk of a Greens/Coalition pact on the issue. However Mr Abbott yesterday said the coalition will not support a Greens bill that would give farmers the right to say no to exploration.
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