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USDA'S REPORT TO CONSUMERS
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE* OFFICE OF COMMUNICATION W 20250
JULIE 1973 No. 113'. '
SIMPLE HOME REPAIRS .
Inside Jobs. Those little repair jobs needed at`E* d
another around the house are simple to do--if you -:ncSY'ri. But,
for an inexperienced person, a leaking faucet can bring tears to (T
the eyes and a broken electric plug can leave one completely in
the dark. A new USDA publication has been prepared by an Exten-
sion Service housing specialist to help even the least experienced -7.
person do some of these simple jobs. In "Simple Home Repairs. .
Inside" step-by-step directions show how to accomplish nine fre- L.
quently-needed indoor repairs, such as leaking faucets, broken
plugs, sticking doors, holes in the wallboard or plaster. Other
sections give tips on how to use basic tools--hammers, screwdrivers,-
pliers--and explain the intricacies of nails, screws, and bolts.
The 28-page booklet is liberally illustrated and written in easy-
to-follow language. It is designed to serve as a householder's ""
home repair manual or as a teaching aid--each of the 11 sections
can be easily reproduced as separate leaflets. Copies of "Simple ,
Home Repairs...Inside" (PA-1034) are 40 cents each from the Super-
intendent of Documents, 'Jovernment Printing Office, Washington,
D.C. 20402 or for 25 cents each from GPO bookstores.
liTPSY MOTH HUNT
Hitchhikers Non Grata. If you camp in any of 11 northeastern
states this summer, chances are your trailer or camping rig will
be searched when you leave. Nothing personal--it's just that a
gypsy moth may have hitched a ride with your caravan. The vehicle
inspection is .part of a USDA caripaign to stop the spread of this
destructive insect whose appetite for leaves has defoliated and
damaged trees on thousands of acres of forestland and backyards
in the northeast. Two major camping groups--the National Campers
and Hikers Association ilCKA) and the iorth American Family Camping
Association (NAFCA)--are cooperating with USDA in the campaign.
Usin_ traps and training provided by USDA's Animal and Plant Health
Tsp.ection Service, ilCHA members in 37 states will maintain a trap-
ping program to detect any gypsy moths which spread outside the
northeastern states. NAFCA members are serving as volunteers to
inspect recreational vehicles. The program, which began in mid-May,
will continue until Labor Day.
SUMMER FOOD PREVIEW
Better weather, larger food supplies, and Government actions are cooperating
to stone the rise in food prices and to help to limit increases after the current
freeze is scheduled to end not later than mid-August. Even so, retail food prices
will average above the 1972 level, reflecting the strong price upsurge that has
The last six.months have been hard on food prices. While consumers came to
the store with considerably more income than a year before, the supplies of food
reaching counters were pmewhat smaller--especially for red meat, poultry products,
and noncitrus fruits. Food prices in the first half of 1973 averaged about 10 per-
cent higher than a year before.
Mandatory ceilings will hold prices in check, at least until August 12.
Prices of food as well as nearly all other goods and services can go no higher than
they were in the first week of June. Although such unprocessed products as fresh
fruits, vegetables, and eggs are not regulated at the farm level, they still face
the ceilings imposed at the crucial retail level. During the Phase I freeze in
1971, these products were allowed to fluctuate freely at all levels while other
retail prices were frozen.
Don't be misled by the term "frozen". Prices can drop whenever supplies in-
crease or demand diminishes. For example, prices may drop for some fresh fruits
and vegetables in season later this summer.
Most foods, however, will be bumping ceiling rates during the 60-day freeze
period. Supplies of all major protein foods are tight this summer. Higher feed
costs have limited the pace of livestock and poultry production, as well as milk
output. And pork production also is seasonally smallest this time of year.
Prices of most st-aple items, canned and frozen goods, and convenience foods
will be held against ceiling levels by both high ingredient costs (such as wheat in
flour or soybean oil in margarine) and recent cost pressures in the food industry.
Over the last six months of the year. however, easing of tight food stocks
will help relieve the pressure on prices. Larger food imports are forecast. Since
farmers have increased acreage, if the weather cooperates, the harvest of fall
crops will be larger. A more normal fruit harvest and a greater acreage of vege-
tables are in view. Supplies of red meat and poultry will be seasonally larger.
While the freeze temporarily shields shoppers from price increases, Government
officials are designing Phase IV, a new set of possible price controls, and explor-
ing new avenues for easing supply pressures on food prices.
The administration has requested authority to allocate food and feed supplies
between our domestic and export markets. The administration also wants authority
to lift tariffs on meat and other needed food imports.
Steps are being considered to assure farmers enough fuel to accomplish their
fall harvesting and grain drying chores. With millions of extra acres to harvest,
fuel needs will climb beyond their usual harvesttime peaks.
SUrJMER FOOD PREVIEW
Even with larger supplies of basic commodities such as corn, wheat, or soy-
beans this fall, the full impact on fooj prices won't be immediate. This is es-
pecially so for meat, poultry, and dairy products because of the time lag between
the decision to increase production and the day when products get to market.
Meanwhile, here's what you can expect for food supplies and prices after the
current freeze expires:
Meat prices might ease a little from ceiling levels. Pork production will be
rising seasonally, and some expansion in beef is possible.
Same's true for poultry. The main turkey marketing time is ahead. Given some
relief in feed prices and prospects for higher incomes, farmers may increase the
output of both broilers and eggs, pushing supplies upward.
Milk output will continue a little below the level of last year, and prices of
dairy products during June-December will average well above the last six months of
More fruit is on the way than last summer. The harvest is expected to rebound
some from last year's extremely small crops (weather was the cause)--more sweet
cherries, pears, apricots, and California grapes are forecast. Fresh peach supplies
reaching their peaks in August are forecast moderately larger than last year's re-
duced amount. Continuing the trend of past years, and considering the good grove
conditions generally, there may well be another very large orange crop this winter.
As for potatoes, prices will move seasonally lower, once the fall crop comes
to market in September. Frozen potato products and instant potatoes are still an
economical supplement to fresh potatoes.
With more normal onion supplies, prices recently have returned to a lower-
priced range. Late summer should bring further increases in supply. Lettuce prices
should moderate this summer from levels of late May and early June.
Vegetable growers plan to harvest larger crops for processing this year, but
canners' and freezers' stocks are way down. So prices will balance out near their
present levels through this summer and fall.
Coffee Drices have risen on world markets; they will stay up for the rest of
Lists And A Special Announcement. The Plentiful Foods Program, which provides as-
sistance to the food trade and the news media in stimulating consumption of foods in
surplus supply, is soon to be discontinued as a separate entity. As of August 1,
the program's activities will be provided through other divisions of its administer-
ing agency, USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service. The action will result in great-
er coordination of Plentiful Foods activities with other commodity marketing pro-
grams of AMS and in administrative savings. Also, Plentiful Foods activities in
recent months have declined as a result of strong domestic and foreign demand for
U.S. foods and activities are expected to continue light during the foreseeable
future, USDA officials said. Meanwhile: The June Plentiful Foods List includes
products of the pasta family, dry beans, corn meal, grits and eggs. -3-
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
IIIIIIIII11 il II IIIIII111ll 1
WATCH THOSE PESTICIDES 3 1262 08740 1096
Know How And How Not To Use Them. It's a fact of life that pests are almost
always with us--in our house, yard, or garden. They come in a variety of
types and with their own peculiar characteristics. Some fly or crawl; some
sprout; some burrow. Some are harmful and some are just pesky. Chemicals
called pesticides have been developed to help control or to rid you of these
nuisances. And while your kids, pets, and neighbors may have characteristics
similar to pests, these chemicals are not meant for them. For the safety of
yourself, your family, neighbors, pets, wild animals, as well as for "good"
bugs and plants, it is important to know how to handle and use pesticides
properly, which ones to use, and what to do with them when they are not in use.
Some important tips on pesticide safety at home and in the garden are given in
a leaflet and in a color slide set, both from USDA. Free copies of the leaflet,
"Safe Use of Pesticides" (PA-589), are available from the Office of Communi-
cation, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Washington, D.C. 20250. The slide set,
"Pesticides In and Around the Home" (C-118), may be purchased for $13.00 from
the Photography Division of the Office of Communication. The visual also comes
as a color filmstrip, which sells for $5.50, from the Photo Lab, Inc., 3825
Georgia Ave. N.W., Washington, D.C. 20011. A cassette with soundtrack is avail-
able from either source for $3.00. Teachers, garden clubs, youth groups,
environmental clubs and other such organizations will find an informative and
interesting program can be built around these information materials.
IMPROVED RABIES VACCINE
For Dogs And Cats. A new type of rabies vaccine for dogs and cats was recently
licensed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The new product, called "rabies
vaccine, killed virus, murine origin," provides high levels of potency along
with a high degree of safety and freedom from side effects. The new vaccine,
available through veterinarians only, is already in production by the licensed
manufacturer and will be widely available within several weeks. Officials of
USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, which issues licenses for
animal vaccines, said the vaccination is by injection into muscle tissues. Pup-
pies and kittens should be vaccinated at three months of age or revaccinated
then if they were vaccinated earlier. Vaccination should be repeated yearly.
The officials emphasized that the new vaccine is authorized for use only in dogs
FROM HOOF TO GRILL
All That Walks Is Not Steak. Less than half of a steer on the hoof ends up as
"take home" beef. Where does it all go? A 1000-pound live steer dresses out to
a 600-pound carcass; the 600 pounds trims down to 162 pounds of fat, bone, and
waste, leaving 438 pounds of saleable beef. Only about 12 percent of each animal
ends up as those mouthwatering broilable steaks such as sirloin, porterhouse,
T-bone, club and rib steaks.
SERVICE is a monthly newsletter of consumer interest. It is designed for those
who report to the individual consumer rather than for mass distribution. For
information about items in this issue, write: Lillie Vincent, Editor of SERVICE,
Office of Communication, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Washington, D.C. 20250.
Telephone (202) 447-5437.
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