If you find yourself paying more for a Slider, Thickburger, or Baconator, you might want to blame the renewable-fuel standard, says a video put out by Feed Food Fairness in opposition to the corn-ethanol mandate.
Refiners will likely blend around 13 million gallons of corn ethanol next year — a level set by the Environmental Protection Agency — which some say is driving up prices across the food industry for other corn-dependent products. Feed Food Fairness is a campaign launched this summer by the National Council of Chain Restaurants to push for repeal of the standard.
White Castle President Lisa Ingram says in the video that her company has seen a 47 percent spike in beef prices since the start of the renewable-fuel standard, with the implication that much of that jump is due to increased feed prices for cattle farmers. The increase carries a $15,000-per-restaurant cost, she said. “When we have fluctuations in our food costs, that impacts our ability to be able to provide value to our customers,” Ingram said.
Hardee’s and Wendy’s franchisees also speak out against the standard, saying it cuts their profits and, by extension, job creation.
Last week, 165 House members signed a letter calling for reductions in next year’s corn-ethanol mandate. Sens. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., and Tom Coburn, R-Okla., are expected to unveil legislation this week that would eliminate the corn-ethanol mandate altogether. Industry groups such as the American Petroleum Institute have also called for a reduction in ethanol blends, but biofuels makers are pushing back with arguments that cutbacks would hamper a growing industry.
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"American spies collected information last summer revealing that senior Russian intelligence and political officials were discussing how to exert influence over Donald J. Trump through his advisers." The conversations centered around Paul Manafort, who was campaign chairman at the time, and Michael Flynn, former national security adviser and then a close campaign surrogate. Both men have been tied heavily with Russia and Flynn is currently at the center of the FBI investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.
"Former FBI Director Robert Mueller has been cleared by U.S. Department of Justice ethics experts to oversee an investigation into possible collusion between then-candidate Donald Trump's 2016 election campaign and Russia." Some had speculated that the White House would use "an ethics rule limiting government attorneys from investigating people their former law firm represented" to trip up Mueller's appointment. Jared Kushner is a client of Mueller's firm, WilmerHale. "Although Mueller has now been cleared by the Justice Department, the White House may still use his former law firm's connection to Manafort and Kushner to undermine the findings of his investigation, according to two sources close to the White House."
Senate Intelligence Committee chairman Richard Burr (R-NC) and ranking member Mark Warner (D-VA) will subpoena two businesses owned by former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn. Burr said, "We would like to hear from General Flynn. We'd like to see his documents. We'd like him to tell his story because he publicly said he had a story to tell."