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The Salt
3:20 am
Fri May 31, 2013

Michigan Tracks Cattle From Birth To Plate

Whenever a steer or cow leaves a farm in Michigan or goes to a slaughterhouse, it passes by a tag reader, and its ID number goes to a central computer that keeps track of every animal's location.
Dan Charles NPR

Originally published on Tue June 4, 2013 10:54 am

When you pick up a cut of beef at the store, would you like to know that animal's life history? The technology to do this does exist — at least in Michigan, where the state requires all cattle to carry electronic ear tags. It's the only state that requires such tags.

Michigan's cattle-tracking system was forced on farmers because of a crisis. Fifteen years ago, cattle in part of the state started catching tuberculosis from wild deer.

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Parallels
3:19 am
Fri May 31, 2013

Battling Deforestation In Indonesia, One Firm At A Time

This photo shows a heavily logged concession affiliated with Asia Pulp and Paper, or APP, one of the world's largest papermakers, on the Indonesian island of Sumatra, in 2010.
Romeo Gacad AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Fri May 31, 2013 8:57 pm

On the Indonesian island of Sumatra, a backhoe stacks freshly cut trees to be made into pulp and paper. Asia Pulp and Paper, or APP, is Indonesia's largest papermaker, and the company and its suppliers operate vast plantations of acacia trees here that have transformed the local landscape.

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Around the Nation
7:31 am
Thu May 30, 2013

New Jersey Man Tries To Auction Off A Place In Heaven

Originally published on Mon June 3, 2013 2:51 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne, reporting there is no heaven on Earth, at least according to eBay. Seller Ari Mandel, formerly Orthodox Jewish, figured he'd done lot of good deeds and never worshipped false gods, so he would be a shoe-in for heaven. His offer on eBay reached $100,000 before the auction was shut down for violating eBay's policy against selling intangible things. This is MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Around the Nation
7:21 am
Thu May 30, 2013

Missing Senior Citizen Comes Home In Time For TV Deadline

Originally published on Thu May 30, 2013 8:19 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Good morning, I'm David Greene.

A television news crew in Maine was reporting a story about a man who had gone missing. Seventy-three-year-old Robert McDonough suffers from dementia and had not been seen for more than 14 hours. As the TV reporter prepared to go live, standing outside McDonough's home, an elderly man wandered into the camera shot. The reporter said hello, then did a double take. Robert McDonough had returned home, safe and sound, just in time for the newscast.

Animals
6:06 am
Thu May 30, 2013

Scientists Say Species Is Earliest Known Bird

Originally published on Thu May 30, 2013 8:19 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

You know what they say about the early bird? Well, a new species is vying for that title. Scientists have long-regarded an ancient creature, known as the Archaeopteryx, as the earliest bird known to science. But a discovery made in China could change that, according to a study published in Nature magazine. Scientists have found evidence of a feathered, chicken-sized species that's 10 million years older. It's called Aurornis xui, and it lived about 160 million years ago.

Sports
6:06 am
Thu May 30, 2013

Blackhawks Beat Wings, Will Meet Kings In NHL Conference Final

Originally published on Thu May 30, 2013 8:18 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

As nail-biting hockey fans know well, there has been a lot of drama in this year's playoffs. Last night in the NHL, no different. The Chicago Blackhawks advanced to the semifinals with a thrilling Game 7 overtime win over the Detroit Red Wings.

Chicago had the best regular season record in the NHL this year. But as NPR's Mike Pesca reports, that doesn't mean much when your back is against the wall in an elimination game.

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Business
6:06 am
Thu May 30, 2013

The Last Word In Business

Originally published on Thu May 30, 2013 8:19 am

Amazon asked subscribers of its video-streaming service to do the jobs usually left to focus groups and executives. The company released 14 pilot TV shows, then looked at customer reviews and view counts. Amazon announced five pilots have been approved for a full season.

The Salt
3:07 am
Thu May 30, 2013

Will Chinese Firm Bring Home The Bacon With Smithfield Deal?

Smithfield Foods, makers of ham products under a variety of brand names, is being purchased by Chinese food maker Shuanghui International for $4.72 billion.
AP

Originally published on Thu May 30, 2013 9:38 am

There were questions Wednesday about whether U.S. regulators will approve the takeover of Smithfield Foods Inc., the company that sells all-American hams, hot dogs and bacon, by China's Shuanghui International.

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The Salt
3:05 am
Thu May 30, 2013

GMO Wheat Found In Oregon Field. How Did It Get There?

Genetically modified wheat has been discovered growing in a field in Oregon. GMO wheat is not approved for sale in the U.S. Above, a wheat field in Arkansas.
Danny Johnston AP

Originally published on Mon June 3, 2013 2:03 pm

A farmer in Oregon has found some genetically engineered wheat growing on his land. It's an unwelcome surprise, because this type of wheat has never been approved for commercial planting.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture says it's investigating, trying to find out how this wheat got there. The USDA says there's no risk to public health, but wheat exporters are worried about how their customers in Asia and Europe will react.

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Parallels
3:05 am
Thu May 30, 2013

Years Of Combat Experience, And Just Turning 20

Luis Bedoya is baby-faced and skinny.

And he looks ever the boy when he puts on an industrial-sized apron, thick gloves and a metal helmet - the tools of an apprentice welder at the Don Bosco center in this city in southern Colombia.

It's a big complex, complete with classrooms, basketball courts, a dormitory and work rooms. It's home to boys and girls, as well as very young adults, who defected from the FARC rebels or were captured by the Colombian army.

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Asia
1:31 pm
Wed May 29, 2013

China's Leaders Promise To Speed Up Economic Reform

The Communist Party's new leadership has pledged to change China's slowing economy by putting a greater emphasis on private enterprise and reining in huge but far less profitable state-owned businesses. Economists say the party has no choice but to update if it wants to stay in power, but they doubt that a genuine overhaul is in the works.

Business
10:47 am
Wed May 29, 2013

China's Shuanghui Buys Pork Giant Smithfield For $4.7 Billion

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

NPR's business news begins with a meaty Chinese investment in the U.S.

A Chinese meat producer plans to buy the U.S. meat company Smithfield for $4.7 billion dollars. Smithfield is the world's largest pork producers, and by some estimates, if this deal is approved by regulators, it would be the biggest takeover of a U.S. company by a Chinese company.

Europe
7:22 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Swedish High School Flubs Graduation Requirement

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 10:47 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

World
7:17 am
Wed May 29, 2013

Nepalese Climber Gives Up For Now On Regaining Everest Title

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 10:47 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning, I'm Renee Montagne with a follow-up on the record for oldest person to scale Mount Everest. An 81-year-old Nepalese climber earned the title five years ago when he was 76. Last week, an 80-year-old Japanese climber took the crown. Now Min Bahadur Sherchan has given up his attempt to snatch it back but bad weather, due to the season, forced him to turn back. Disappointing. Still, it wasn't age that proved the ultimate barrier.

It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

Asia
6:31 am
Wed May 29, 2013

U.S. Drone Strike Hits Taliban Stronghold In Pakistan

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 10:47 am

Transcript

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

On this Wednesday, we are following developments in Pakistan. A U.S. drone strike has killed four suspected militants, including - according to some reports - the Taliban's second-in-command in Pakistan. Now, we should say the militant group denies that he's dead. This is the first strike since President Obama's speech last Thursday, announcing that the use of drones would be scaled back to limit civilian casualties.

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