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• AGRICULTURE. A trade group for potato growers is fighting back against a 2010 order that banned white potatoes from the Women, Infants and Children (WIC) nutrition assistance program. The National Potato Council has hired The Russell Group to talk to federal officials about reversing the ban.

• HEALTH. The lobby shop Mercury is working for clients on two of the largest issues facing the pharmaceutical industry: drug compounding and a bill aimed at allowing regulators to follow medications through the supply chain. Former Rep. Vin Weber (R-Minn.) is on Mercury’s account for Atlas Holdings, a private equity firm, to address the track-and-trace drug legislation moving through Congress.  A group of former congressional staffers at the firm is working on a separate contract for Kythera Biopharmaceuticals, a company that develops and commercializes drugs, on the issue of pharmaceutical compounding.

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PepsiCo is engaging in the obesity debate, hiring Covington & Burling to lobby policymakers on “nutrition and health.” Several former staffers are on the account, including John Veroneau, former staffer to Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), and former House Rules Committee counsel Muftiah McCartin. PepsiCo spent nearly $1.4 million on lobbying in the first quarter of this year.

• TECHNOLOGY. The American arm of Samsung Electronics is mobilizing its lobby team in Washington. Joel Wiginton, a former congressional liaison for President George W. Bush, is among the team of lobbyists at the company that will address patent reform, spectrum allocations and U.S.-Korean relations, among other matters.

• WILDLIFE. As federal regulators consider allowing horse slaughter for human consumption in the United States, Florida consulting firm AIM LLC will be lobbying for client Victoria McCullough on “protecting the welfare of equine.” McCullough is the chairwoman of Chesapeake Petroleum and horse show competitor and advocate. Congress is pushing legislation that would prevent the Department of Agriculture from inspecting horse slaughtering facilities, which would ban the practice.

• FINANCE. Former Rep. Helen Delich Bentley (R-Md.) is helping local attorney Charles T. Dillon lobby the federal government on financial services, investment and immigration issues. Dillon helps clients navigate tax law, Internal Revenue Service controversies and international issues, according to his website, and has held positions at the Justice Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission.