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Editorial Results (free)

1. Florence's flooding claims 3.4 million poultry, 5,500 hogs -

About 3.4 million chickens and turkeys and 5,500 hogs have been killed in flooding from Florence as rising North Carolina rivers swamped dozens of farm buildings where the animals were being raised for market, according to state officials.

2. Judge slashes $50M punitive penalty against pork giant -

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A federal judge is slashing $50 million in damages that a jury awarded neighbors of an industrial hog operation to punish a pork producer for intense smells, noise and other disturbances.

3. Lobbyist tied to Pruitt pushed client's committee candidates -

WASHINGTON (AP) — The lobbyist whose wife rented a condo to Environmental Protection Agency head Scott Pruitt at $50 a night sought EPA committee posts for a lobbying client, according to a newly released EPA memo.

4. Memo: Pruitt landlord's husband sought EPA work for client -

WASHINGTON (AP) — The lobbyist whose wife rented a condo to Environmental Protection Agency head Scott Pruitt at $50 a night sought EPA committee posts for a lobbying client, according to a newly released EPA memo.

5. China raises tariffs on US pork, fruit in trade dispute -

BEIJING (AP) — China raised import duties on a $3 billion list of U.S. pork, apples and other products Monday in an escalating dispute with Washington over trade and industrial policy.

The government of President Xi Jinping said it was responding to a U.S. tariff hike on steel and aluminum. But that is just one facet of sprawling tensions with Washington, Europe and Japan over a state-led economic model they complain hampers market access, protects Chinese companies and subsidizes exports in violation of Beijing's free-trade commitments.

6. US, Chinese companies sign contracts during Trump visit -

BEIJING (AP) — U.S. and Chinese companies on Wednesday signed business deals the two sides valued at $9 billion during a visit by President Donald Trump in a tradition aimed at blunting criticism of Beijing's trade practices.

7. Pork producer's venture aims to grow skin, organs for humans -

SMITHFIELD, Va. (AP) — The world's largest pork producer is entering the business of trying to grow skin and organs for humans.

Virginia's Smithfield Foods said in a news release Wednesday that its new division is called Smithfield Bioscience.

8. China's Wanda buys Legendary Entertainment for $3.5 billion -

BEIJING (AP) — Wanda Group said Tuesday it is buying Hollywood's Legendary Entertainment, the maker of films such as "Batman," for $3.5 billion in the first Chinese acquisition of a major U.S. film company.

9. US bacon prices rise after virus kills baby pigs -

MILWAUKEE (AP) — A virus never before seen in the U.S. has killed millions of baby pigs in less than a year, and with little known about how it spreads or how to stop it, it's threatening pork production and pushing up prices by 10 percent or more.

10. Barge Waggoner’s Higgins honored as top engineer -

Bob Higgins, president and CEO of Barge, Waggoner, Sumner and Cannon, Inc., has been named 2014 Engineer of the Year by the Tennessee Society of Professional Engineers.

11. Sears Holdings severs ties with Paula Deen -

NEW YORK (AP) — Paula Deen just lost another partner.

Sears Holdings Corp. announced Friday that it is cutting ties with the Southern celebrity chef, adding to the list of companies severing their relationship following revelations that Deen used racial slurs in the past.

12. Target cuts ties with Deen; drugmaker distances -

NEW YORK (AP) — Paula Deen's merchandise and media empire is fast unraveling.

Retailers Target Corp. and Home Depot Inc. and diabetes drug maker Novo Nordisk became the latest companies to sever ties or distance themselves from celebrity cook Paula Deen as fallout builds from revelations that the Southern celebrity chef used racial slurs in the past.

13. Stocks fall; Dow average pulls back from a record -

NEW YORK (AP) — Wall Street's recent passion for high-dividend stocks is fading.

The stock market closed lower Wednesday, led by the same industry groups that had the biggest gains early in the year: rich dividend payers like power utilities and makers of consumer staples.

14. Kraft suing Cracker Barrel restaurants over name -

NEW YORK (AP) - Kraft Foods is suing Cracker Barrel Old Country Store over the restaurant chain's plans to use the "Cracker Barrel" name on packaged ham, bacon and other foods.

Kraft notes that it started using the "Cracker Barrel" name on cheese in 1954. Cracker Barrel Old Country Store Inc., which is based in Lebanon, Tenn. and operates 620 locations around the country, was established in 1969.

15. Cracker Barrel to sell its products in groceries -

LEBANON (AP) — Cracker Barrel plans to begin selling its some of its products in grocery stores.

The Lebanon-based restaurant chain already sells items like pancake and corn muffin mixes, cobbler filling and syrup in the stores attached to its restaurants and online.

16. Ham prices high heading into Easter holiday -

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Ham will be the centerpiece of many Easter dinners this weekend, but the cost of that traditional main dish may make it harder for families to live high on the hog.

Ham prices have been higher than usual for the past two years because the cost of pig feed has gone up, and some major pork producers are spending millions to convert barns as they phase out cramped cages used to confine pregnant sows.