STATEWIDE — The signing of a two-year agreement between Taiwan and U.S. Wheat Associates is good news for Oregon wheat growers. The Taiwan Flour Millers Association agreed to purchase wheat worth $17.4 million in 2008 and 2009 from Oregon growers, launching a wheat purchasing relationship that’s expected to continue beyond the initial two years, according to Tana Simpson, administrator at the Oregon Wheat Commission. Oregon chiefly produces soft white wheat, which is grown in seven counties in north central and northeast Oregon and is an ingredient used in noodles and steamed buns in Taiwan. Taiwan relies completely on imports for its wheat and purchased 150,000 metric tons from Oregon last year, according to the U.S. Wheat Associates.
STATEWIDE — A new law has payday loan operations across Oregon shutting their doors, including 26 locations of The Cash Store and 21 locations of Check ‘n Go. The Predatory Lending Cap, which became law on July 1, mandates a 36% cap on interest rates and lengthens loan periods from two weeks to 31 days. The cap was part of a package of bills passed in succession in mid- to late June to protect consumers by regulating short-term finance services, an industry that has seen rapid growth in recent years and that critics claim preys on lower-income customers.
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