4Even though Soybean Digest Publisher Ron Sorensen recently traveled to Italy to get away from work, he couldn't. In a public square area, where dozens of posters were stapled to walls, he spotted the image below. Translated, the poster's headline says something like: "The Third World War Is Coming Straight To Your Dish (Food)."

Obviously, genetically modified crops continue to get front-page attention - particularly from countries in the European Union (EU). The fight to get the EU to honor scientific proof that genetically engineered food is safe marches on. Consumers are wound up.

Industry leaders here in the U.S., after completing the World Trade Organization session in Seattle, are disappointed in progress on the biotech front. Steve Censky, American Soybean Association (ASA) chief executive, says the push to get a global biotech "working group" failed.

Still, ASA and the National Corn Growers will keep hammering away at getting the group organized to help crack European trade barriers.

We salute their efforts.

New Department Columns

* You may have noticed stories originating from Brazil by James Thompson, a former ASA staffer. Now, you'll regularly see his column "From Brazil," page 30. Jim is a farm kid from West Tennessee and brings a foreign perspective to our pages.

* Managing risk means more than just buying crop insurance or marketing grain. It also means cutting costs with measures like locking in diesel fuel prices at a discount. Consultant Moe Russell, with 26 years of Farm Credit Services experience, begins his column "Riskwise," page 10. Watch for his commonsense advice.

* We're making something old new again. Look for Alan Kluis' educational "Better Grain Merchandising" column repackaged into "Master Your Marketing," page 76.

* Including Washington coverage, "News & enews," page 9, also makes its debut this month. Let us know if you find these columns useful. Email us at: SBD@intertec.com or write to us at 7900 International Dr., Ste. 300, Minneapolis, MN 55425. We appreciate any and all comments. ?