Harvest Public Media http://hppr.org en My Farm Roots: Touch the ground http://hppr.org/post/my-farm-roots-touch-ground <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p>As a young man, Elisha Pullen never imagined he would spend his days on the farm.</p><p>Growing up near rural Bell City in southeastern Missouri’s “Bootheel” region, Pullen longed to leave the farm and get an education.</p><p>“I grew up in the day and time when we had to do a lot of chopping and stuff like that. Hard labor,” Pullen said. “I’m going to college, I’m getting my degree and I’m going to work in the air conditioning.” Sat, 19 Jul 2014 05:01:27 +0000 Jacob McCleland 34634 at http://hppr.org My Farm Roots: Touch the ground Out of public eye, a bitter Farm Bill fight http://hppr.org/post/out-public-eye-bitter-farm-bill-fight <p></p><p>The “who” part of the Farm Bill is pretty clear.</p><p>With trillions dollars of government spending up for grabs, lobbyists from all ends of the spectrum – representing environmental interests, biotech companies, food companies, farmers – flocked to Capitol Hill to find their piece of the Farm Bill pie. Thu, 17 Jul 2014 05:01:27 +0000 Jeremy Bernfeld 34633 at http://hppr.org Out of public eye, a bitter Farm Bill fight Lobbyists of all kinds flock to Farm Bill http://hppr.org/post/lobbyists-all-kinds-flock-farm-bill <p>When U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow <a href="http://harvestpublicmedia.org/article/years-making-new-farm-bill-becomes-law">announced passage of the Farm Bill</a> in February, she echoed a refrain from a car commercial.</p><p>“This is not your father’s Farm Bill,” she said.</p><p>While Stabenow, the Michigan Democrat who leads the Senate Agriculture Committee, was referring to what proponents heralded as “reform” of some programs, her remarks were accurate on another score. The massive <a href="http://www.cbo.gov/publication/45049">Farm Bill, which will spend $956 billion</a> and set U.S. food policy for the next decade, is no longer the purview solely of agricultural interests. Wed, 16 Jul 2014 05:01:27 +0000 Peggy Lowe 34518 at http://hppr.org Lobbyists of all kinds flock to Farm Bill States working out kinks to keep ag tourism growing http://hppr.org/post/states-working-out-kinks-keep-ag-tourism-growing <p></p><p>Colorado already draws thousands of visitors each year for skiing, hiking, beer drinking and, most recently, marijuana sampling. In 2012, those visitors spent more than $16 billion in the state. Tourism officials want more and they’re looking to do it by bringing well-educated “traveling foodies” to the state. Tue, 15 Jul 2014 05:01:27 +0000 Luke Runyon 34519 at http://hppr.org States working out kinks to keep ag tourism growing Mutton Busting A Rodeo Tradition For Rough And Tumble Kids http://hppr.org/post/mutton-busting-rodeo-tradition-rough-and-tumble-kids <p></p><p>A furry beast, a brave rider and a roaring crowd make up the list of ingredients for the Western rodeo tradition known as “mutton busting.” Think of it as bull-riding, but for 6-year-olds, and the furry beast is actually a wooly sheep. Sat, 12 Jul 2014 05:01:27 +0000 Luke Runyon 34388 at http://hppr.org Mutton Busting A Rodeo Tradition For Rough And Tumble Kids EPA promotes water rule to farmers http://hppr.org/post/epa-promotes-water-rule-farmers <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p>The head of the Environmental Protection Agency is touring farm country, trying to assure farmers that the agency isn’t asking for more authority over farmers and ranchers’ lands. Fri, 11 Jul 2014 05:01:27 +0000 Kristofor Husted 34380 at http://hppr.org EPA promotes water rule to farmers 100 years on, Panama Canal still vital to farm economy http://hppr.org/post/100-years-panama-canal-still-vital-farm-economy <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">When it opened in 1914, the Panama Canal introduced the harvest from Midwest farms to the world and helped link U.S. farmers to the global economy. Nearly a century-old, the canal today remains an important connector of global trade, from the U.S. heartland to Asia.</span></p><p>“Obviously it’s one of our major achievements,” said Bill Angrick, a former state Ombudsman of Iowa who was born in the Canal Zone and has studied the engineering marvel. “It’s like going to the moon. It’s something we did well and did right.”</p> Tue, 08 Jul 2014 05:01:02 +0000 Rick Fredericksen 34216 at http://hppr.org 100 years on, Panama Canal still vital to farm economy AMA seeks ban on antibiotics for weight gain http://hppr.org/post/ama-seeks-ban-antibiotics-weight-gain <p style="margin-bottom: 20px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; font-family: 'PT Sans', sans-serif;">The largest association of U.S. physicians is calling for tighter rules on antibiotic use in livestock.&nbsp;</p> Mon, 07 Jul 2014 15:38:30 +0000 Kristofor Husted 34189 at http://hppr.org AMA seeks ban on antibiotics for weight gain Report: Farmer Suicide Rate Higher Than All Other Workers http://hppr.org/post/report-farmer-suicide-rate-higher-all-other-workers <p>U.S. farmers are more than three times more likely to commit suicide than other workers, a new study has found.</p><p>University of Iowa researcher Wendy Ringgenberg&nbsp;compiled a study based on Occupational Safety and Health Administration farm death statistics from 1992 to 2010. <a href="http://iowapublicradio.org/post/farm-workers-far-more-likely-die-suicide-why" target="_blank">In a recent interview with Iowa Public Radio</a>, Ringgenberg said suicide rates have likely been underestimated and underreported. Mon, 23 Jun 2014 21:20:57 +0000 Cody Newill 33600 at http://hppr.org Report: Farmer Suicide Rate Higher Than All Other Workers Agritourism a growing opportunity on the farm http://hppr.org/post/agritourism-growing-opportunity-farm <p>Farms aren’t just for food any more. With the <a href="http://harvestpublicmedia.org/content/local-food-challenge">local food movement growing</a>, more savvy farmers are putting a price tag on more than those organic tomatoes. They are instead marketing and selling the “farm experience” in the form of agritourism attractions. Sat, 21 Jun 2014 05:01:27 +0000 Luke Runyon 33426 at http://hppr.org Agritourism a growing opportunity on the farm Cattle move north for water http://hppr.org/post/cattle-move-north-water <p>The U.S. cattle herd has <a href="http://harvestpublicmedia.org/article/midwest-cattle-paradise-drought-stretches-beef-country">changed dramatically over the last four years</a>, largely thanks to drought.</p><p>The supply of beef has been in free-fall. Perhaps you’ve noticed sky-high prices for hamburger and steak. Fri, 20 Jun 2014 05:01:27 +0000 Jeremy Bernfeld 33422 at http://hppr.org Cattle move north for water Drought re-shaping the cattle map http://hppr.org/post/drought-re-shaping-cattle-map <p>Drought is re-shaping the beef map and raising the price of steak. Ranchers are moving herds <a href="http://www.denverpost.com/business/ci_25773718/california-cattle-short-food-finding-way-colorado">from California to Colorado</a> and <a href="http://lubbockonline.com/agriculture/2014-03-02/texas-trails-nebraska-number-cattle-feeding#.U5dGJPmwJcQ">from Texas to Nebraska</a> seeking refuge from dry weather. And cattle producers in the Midwest are making the most of it. Mon, 16 Jun 2014 05:01:27 +0000 Grant Gerlock 33184 at http://hppr.org Drought re-shaping the cattle map Cargill to stop use of gestation crates for hogs http://hppr.org/post/cargill-stop-use-gestation-crates-hogs <p>Cargill, one of the country’s largest pork producers, <a href="http://www.cargill.com/news/releases/2014/NA31657661.jsp">announced Monday</a> that it will stop using gestation crates, the <a href="http://harvestpublicmedia.org/article/1366/crate-question-looms-over-pork-producers/5">controversial narrow cages</a> meant to house and separate sows. Cargill is joining other major meatpackers, like competitors Tyson and Smithfield Foods, in planning to move away from hog crates. Wed, 11 Jun 2014 05:01:27 +0000 Grant Gerlock 33013 at http://hppr.org Cargill to stop use of gestation crates for hogs Drought hammers winter wheat across the Plains http://hppr.org/post/drought-hammers-winter-wheat-across-plains <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p>Much of the Midwest and the Plains have been battling drought for years. And the current winter wheat crop looks like it will be one of the worst in recent memory, stressing farmers in the heart of the Wheat Belt – from Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Colorado and Nebraska. Tue, 10 Jun 2014 05:01:27 +0000 Ariana Brocious 32960 at http://hppr.org Drought hammers winter wheat across the Plains Flour milling merger moves forward http://hppr.org/post/flour-milling-merger-moves-forward <p>Federal regulators Tuesday gave the final go-ahead for two of the country’s largest flour milling companies to merge.</p><p>Food giants ConAgra and Cargill said last year they wanted to put their flour mills under one roof in a new company called Ardent Mills. But a <a href="http://harvestpublicmedia.org/article/proposed-merger-could-create-flour-milling-goliath-wheat">chorus of antitrust watchdogs said the deal </a>would further consolidate an already concentrated industry. Wed, 28 May 2014 05:01:01 +0000 Luke Runyon 32413 at http://hppr.org Flour milling merger moves forward Miscanthus: A growing energy crop http://hppr.org/post/miscanthus-growing-energy-crop <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p>Miscanthus, a relative of sugar cane that looks like bamboo, could be the Midwest’s next energy crop. But in a region dominated by corn and soybeans, it has yet to fully catch on, even as advocates tout its advantages. Sat, 24 May 2014 14:08:53 +0000 Rick Fredericksen 32251 at http://hppr.org Miscanthus: A growing energy crop Drought still taking toll on ranchers, beef prices http://hppr.org/post/drought-still-taking-toll-ranchers-beef-prices <p>California ranchers, <a href="http://www.npr.org/blogs/thesalt/2014/04/14/302858835/drought-increased-demand-contribute-to-high-beef-prices">despite near-record beef prices</a>, are shrinking their cattle herds in response to one of the most severe droughts the state has ever faced, and many Western ranchers are taking advantage. Fri, 23 May 2014 05:01:27 +0000 Jackie Fortier 32192 at http://hppr.org Drought still taking toll on ranchers, beef prices Canada feeding the American appetite for hemp http://hppr.org/post/canada-feeding-american-appetite-hemp <p></p> Fri, 16 May 2014 18:06:56 +0000 Luke Runyon 31907 at http://hppr.org Canada feeding the American appetite for hemp Hemp growing returns after 44 year ban http://hppr.org/post/hemp-growing-returns-after-44-year-ban <p></p><p>A<a href="http://harvestpublicmedia.org/content/colorado-hemp-growers-begin-historic-planting-season#.U208cPldUrU" target="_blank">&nbsp;handful of farmers</a>&nbsp;are set to plant the country’s first hemp crop in decades, despite federal regulations that tightly restrict the plant’s cultivation.</p> Wed, 14 May 2014 05:01:02 +0000 Luke Runyon 31782 at http://hppr.org Hemp growing returns after 44 year ban A hemp growing “revolution” coming to agriculture? http://hppr.org/post/hemp-growing-revolution-coming-agriculture <p></p><p>The farm bill passed earlier this year is big news for advocates of hemp. New rules differentiate industrial hemp from its cousin, marijuana, and pave the way for research on the plant. &nbsp;Hemp is still considered a controlled substance by federal regulators. But some states are giving farmers the chance to experiment.</p><p> Mon, 12 May 2014 04:23:26 +0000 Luke Runyon & Luke Run 31674 at http://hppr.org A hemp growing “revolution” coming to agriculture? Feathers ruffled by Fed plan to save prairie chicken http://hppr.org/post/feathers-ruffled-fed-plan-save-prairie-chicken <p>It's prairie chicken mating season!</p><p>Still, it's tough being a lesser prairie chicken these days. This type of grouse once spanned an enormous area, though now they survive mainly in pockets of Oklahoma and Kansas. Their numbers are plummeting; in 2012, the population dropped by half.</p><p> Mon, 28 Apr 2014 05:00:00 +0000 Frank Morris 31061 at http://hppr.org Feathers ruffled by Fed plan to save prairie chicken Farming, rural living and suicide http://hppr.org/post/farming-rural-living-and-suicide <p>A 2002 study in the American Journal of Public Health found that men living in rural counties were much more likely to kill themselves than urban men. (Stephen D/Flickr)</p><p>An alarming number of farmers in the U.S. take their own lives, according to the magazine Newsweek. And while we don’t have great statistics, some of the best numbers available suggest men on the farm today kill themselves nearly twice as often as other men in the general population.</p> Sat, 26 Apr 2014 05:00:01 +0000 Grant Gerlock 31009 at http://hppr.org Farming, rural living and suicide Ranchers Wringing Hands Over Possible Brazilian Beef Imports http://hppr.org/post/ranchers-wringing-hands-over-possible-brazilian-beef-imports <p>Sharon Harvat drives a blue pick-up truck through a field of several hundred pregnant heifers on her property outside Scottsbluff in western Nebraska and notes, “On a warm day they’ll lay out flat like that...”.</p><p>Harvat and her husband John run their cattle here in the Nebraska panhandle during the winter and take them back to the mountains in northern Colorado when the calves are born. Harvat says, when she heard about a proposal to open up beef trade with Brazil, she felt a pit in her stomach.&nbsp; “On an operation like ours, where we travel a lot with our cattle, that would probably come to an abrupt halt if there was an outbreak.”</p><p> Fri, 25 Apr 2014 05:00:00 +0000 Luke Runyon 30957 at http://hppr.org Ranchers Wringing Hands Over Possible Brazilian Beef Imports Vertical farming growing up http://hppr.org/post/vertical-farming-growing <p></p><p>Farmers are making inroads supplying local food to hungry city foodies, but many producers are trying to grow more food in urban centers. City real estate is at a premium, so some producers are finding more space by using what’s called “vertical farming,” and going up rather than spreading out.</p><p>Growers across the country are heading indoors, using greenhouses and hydroponics – growing plants in a water and nutrient solution instead of soil and using lamps to replace sunlight. Vertical farming takes that to a new level.</p> Mon, 21 Apr 2014 05:00:01 +0000 Peter Gray 30716 at http://hppr.org Vertical farming growing up No more brewery leftovers for cattle? http://hppr.org/post/no-more-brewery-leftovers-cattle <p>Few people connect craft breweries with cattle feed. But passing along the spent grains from the brewing process, like barley and wheat, to livestock ranchers is a common practice. Although now, that relationship could be in jeopardy.</p> Sat, 19 Apr 2014 05:00:01 +0000 Luke Runyon 30652 at http://hppr.org No more brewery leftovers for cattle? Unpacking lessons from Colorado's cantaloupe listeria scare http://hppr.org/post/unpacking-lessons-colorados-cantaloupe-listeria-scare <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p>When Colorado cantaloupe laden with the deadly pathogen listeria killed more than 30 people in 2011, shockwaves rippled throughout the food industry. The outbreak made one thing clear: huge cracks exist in the systems meant to keep our food safe to eat. Denver Post reporters Michael Booth and Jennifer Brown set out to explore those conflicts within food safety in their new book Eating Dangerously. Tue, 25 Mar 2014 05:01:27 +0000 Luke Runyon 29512 at http://hppr.org Unpacking lessons from Colorado's cantaloupe listeria scare Drones: Coming soon to a farm near you? http://hppr.org/post/drones-coming-soon-farm-near-you <div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"><p>Unmanned aerial vehicles aren’t just for spies or for the battlefield. Farmers all over the country think drones can give them a leg up, too.</p><p>Tech-savvy farmers have been waiting for years for the government to make up its mind about the commercial use of unmanned aerial vehicles. Right now, anyone flying a drone for business instead of as a hobby is actually <a href="http://www.politico.com/story/2014/03/faa-small-drones-ban-104393.html">breaking federal law</a>. But the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), which oversees U.S. airspace, says it plans to roll out rules for drones this year. Mon, 24 Mar 2014 13:42:55 +0000 Peter Gray 29510 at http://hppr.org Drones: Coming soon to a farm near you? Recovering from flooding, Colorado farmers hope for enough water http://hppr.org/post/recovering-flooding-colorado-farmers-hope-enough-water <p>When <a href="http://kunc.org/post/death-toll-likely-rise-colorado-flooding-officials-say">September’s flood waters came down from the Front Range foothills</a>, they destroyed homes and wrecked office parks. The water ruined roads, bridges and highways. The floods destroyed farms and crops, and unleashed tremendous pressure on aging irrigation infrastructure, some of which dated back to the late 1800s. Fri, 21 Mar 2014 23:00:53 +0000 Luke Runyon 29431 at http://hppr.org Recovering from flooding, Colorado farmers hope for enough water Bring home the bacon: Virus cutting pork supplies http://hppr.org/post/bring-home-bacon-virus-cutting-pork-supplies <p>Bacon-loving shoppers prepare yourselves: A <a href="http://harvestpublicmedia.org/article/ped-virus-continues-rip-through-hog-farms">virus that has devastated piglets</a> for nearly a year is causing lower pork supplies and higher prices. Wed, 19 Mar 2014 05:01:01 +0000 Amy Mayer 29257 at http://hppr.org Bring home the bacon: Virus cutting pork supplies Padlock the milk! FDA’s push to safeguard the food supply http://hppr.org/post/padlock-milk-fda-s-push-safeguard-food-supply <p>Many of the food terrorism scenarios outlined by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration involve liquid.</p><p>And there’s good reason for that. Mon, 17 Mar 2014 14:59:29 +0000 Abbie Fentress Swanson 29200 at http://hppr.org Padlock the milk! FDA’s push to safeguard the food supply