Harvest Public Media http://kcur.org en My Farm Roots: Touch The Ground http://kcur.org/post/my-farm-roots-touch-ground <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.”</p> Wed, 09 Jul 2014 14:38:50 +0000 Jacob McCleland 58598 at http://kcur.org My Farm Roots: Touch The Ground Mutton Busting A Rodeo Tradition For Rough And Tumble Kids http://kcur.org/post/mutton-busting-rodeo-tradition-rough-and-tumble-kids <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.</p><p>Mutton busting has its roots in Colorado, where it was first introduced in the 1980s at the National Western Stock Show in Denver. The crowd-pleaser is now a favorite at many rodeos and county fairs across the Midwest and Great Plains.</p> Mon, 07 Jul 2014 13:34:55 +0000 Luke Runyon 58474 at http://kcur.org Mutton Busting A Rodeo Tradition For Rough And Tumble Kids My Farm Roots: Smells Like Home http://kcur.org/post/my-farm-roots-smells-home <p>Most family vacations are remembered for endless car rides, packed tourist beaches and a string of poorly decorated hotel rooms.</p><p>But not former Nebraskan and current Coloradan Kari Williams. Her family vacation memories center on smells of cow manure, adventures on horseback and roosters with bad attitudes on farms in central Nebraska.</p> Wed, 02 Jul 2014 14:23:45 +0000 Luke Runyon 58269 at http://kcur.org My Farm Roots: Smells Like Home Feed The Future Seeks Hunger Solutions From The Heartland http://kcur.org/post/feed-future-seeks-hunger-solutions-heartland <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>Global hunger has no easy answer.</p><p>But as part of a partnership with the federal government called&nbsp;<a href="http://feedthefuture.gov/">Feed the Future</a>, researchers at land-grant universities are trying new approaches to the decades-old dilemma.</p> Mon, 30 Jun 2014 06:05:01 +0000 Amy Mayer 58056 at http://kcur.org Feed The Future Seeks Hunger Solutions From The Heartland Beef Sent To Kansas City Restaurant Recalled Due To Mad Cow Fear http://kcur.org/post/beef-sent-kansas-city-restaurant-recalled-due-mad-cow-fear <p>Food safety regulators are recalling beef that could be tainted by parts of cattle nervous system that can carry mad cow disease and a Kansas City restaurant may be affected.</p> Thu, 12 Jun 2014 17:24:04 +0000 Jeremy Bernfeld 57218 at http://kcur.org Aquaponics Brings Fish And Produce Under One Roof http://kcur.org/post/aquaponics-brings-fish-and-produce-under-one-roof <p>Farmers all over the country are using <a href="http://harvestpublicmedia.org/article/1442/drought-heat-some-farmers-try-hydroponics-nebraska/5">hydroponic technology</a> to grow produce indoors, year-round, in nutrient rich water. And fish farmers around the globe have figured out how to raise their catch in tanks. Now, some operations are combining the two, raising both produce <em>and</em> fish.</p><p>Many so-called “aquaponics” operations use the waste from fish farming to fertilize the water used in growing hydroponic produce.</p> Mon, 26 May 2014 12:23:13 +0000 Pat Blank 56320 at http://kcur.org Aquaponics Brings Fish And Produce Under One Roof Now Appearing: Hemp, For First Time In Decades http://kcur.org/post/now-appearing-hemp-first-time-decades <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">A</span><a href="http://harvestpublicmedia.org/content/colorado-hemp-growers-begin-historic-planting-season#.U208cPldUrU" style="line-height: 1.5;"> handful of farmers</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> are set to plant the country’s first hemp crop in decades, despite federal regulations that tightly restrict the plant’s cultivation.</span></p> Mon, 19 May 2014 11:00:00 +0000 Luke Runyon 55878 at http://kcur.org Now Appearing: Hemp, For First Time In Decades In Ivanhoe, Food Helping Neighborhood Rebuild http://kcur.org/post/ivanhoe-food-helping-neighborhood-rebuild <p>Terry Glenn’s neighborhood was hit hard by the recession, and it wasn’t booming before the rough times.</p><p>He saw houses crumble, get boarded up and left to rot. He saw neighbors moving away. And he worried that Ivanhoe, on Kansas City’s east side, was dying.</p><p>“We said, ‘We’ve got to look inside of this and see exactly what the problem is,’” Glenn said. “And once we did, we found out that the families were moving to try to find better schools, find healthier food, find different places that their family can go and have a good community.”</p> Thu, 01 May 2014 16:09:58 +0000 Jeremy Bernfeld 55064 at http://kcur.org In Ivanhoe, Food Helping Neighborhood Rebuild Study: Cellulosic Ethanol Production May Harm Climate http://kcur.org/post/study-cellulosic-ethanol-production-may-harm-climate <p style="margin-bottom: 20px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; font-family: 'PT Sans', sans-serif;">Biofuels made in the Midwest from corn stover, the leftovers of harvested corn plants, may be worse for global warming than gasoline in the short term, according to a recent study. It’s casting doubt on the greenhouse benefits of cellulosic ethanol.</p> Wed, 23 Apr 2014 20:25:07 +0000 Grant Gerlock 54660 at http://kcur.org Snowy Winter Not Causing Flood Concerns On Missouri River http://kcur.org/post/snowy-winter-not-causing-flood-concerns-missouri-river <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">A long winter of brutally cold temperatures and seemingly endless snowfall led to a deep snowpack in the mountains at the headwaters of the Missouri River.&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">But that doesn’t necessarily mean a higher risk of flooding this spring.&nbsp;</span></p><p>2011 brought major flooding to many areas along the Missouri River. This year, the snow pack is comparable to those levels. But Kevin Low of the National Weather Service says even though the snow is starting to melt, there are a few differences this year.</p> Mon, 21 Apr 2014 13:33:24 +0000 Suzanne Hogan 54275 at http://kcur.org Snowy Winter Not Causing Flood Concerns On Missouri River Chinese Market Could Help Rid Rivers Of Invasive Asian Carp http://kcur.org/post/chinese-market-could-help-rid-rivers-invasive-asian-carp <p></p><p>Water experts worried about Asian carp may have new hope. They’re turning their eyes to China, where a carp-hungry populace may be the key for stemming the tide of the invasive fish.</p><p>Asian carp are taking over U.S. waterways, including the Mississippi River and tributaries like the Illinois and Missouri Rivers, where they out-compete native fish.</p><p>In China, carp is cheap and a common meal-time fixture. Now, a carp fishing industry is springing up along carp-infested U.S. waters and processors are exporting the U.S. problem fish to Chinese diners.</p> Mon, 21 Apr 2014 11:00:00 +0000 Jacob McCleland 54414 at http://kcur.org Chinese Market Could Help Rid Rivers Of Invasive Asian Carp Food Hubs Could Provide Crucial Link For Amish Farmers http://kcur.org/post/food-hubs-could-provide-crucial-link-amish-farmers <p>Lacking the infrastructure of traditional suppliers, many local farms that want to connect to restaurants, schools and other big buyers are using the Internet to reach customers.</p><p>Groups of farms are banding together to form <a href="http://www.ams.usda.gov/AMSv1.0/foodhubs">regional food hubs</a>, leveraging online ordering, tracking and marketing tools to cut down on costs and to try to keep local food systems viable for growers and affordable for consumers.</p> Tue, 25 Mar 2014 13:06:20 +0000 Peter Gray 53163 at http://kcur.org Food Hubs Could Provide Crucial Link For Amish Farmers USDA Announces 'Concerted Effort' To Help Small Farms http://kcur.org/post/usda-announces-concerted-effort-help-small-farms <p>The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced Monday that it is launching what it calls “a concerted effort” to help small and mid-sized farms.</p><p>The announcement from Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack comes after a recent census pointed to a reduction in the number of smaller farming operations.</p><p>Speaking with reporters from the National Farmers Union Convention in Santa Fe, New Mexico, Vilsack says his department is working to assist these farmers in finding markets for their products.</p> Tue, 11 Mar 2014 12:52:29 +0000 Harvest Public Media 52444 at http://kcur.org Padlock The Milk! FDA’s Push To Safeguard The Food Supply http://kcur.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.</p><p>Liquids like orange juice and milk go through many processing steps -- farm, bottling plant, delivery – before reaching the consumers who drink them. And these liquids are moved, manufactured and stored in huge batches that get distributed and consumed quickly. Should a toxin be injected somewhere along the supply chain, experts believe it could have devastating human health and economic consequences.</p> Tue, 11 Mar 2014 12:45:02 +0000 Abbie Fentress Swanson 52443 at http://kcur.org Padlock The Milk! FDA’s Push To Safeguard The Food Supply Could Our Food Supply Be A Target For Terrorists? http://kcur.org/post/could-our-food-supply-be-target-terrorists <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>It sounds like the plot of a Hollywood blockbuster. Villains in trench coats scheme ways to cause the most destruction and chaos. They settle on a food company, an easy target, and plan to lace the products with a chemical or pathogen. The hero finds out the plan with enough time to save the day.</p> Mon, 10 Mar 2014 13:27:28 +0000 Luke Runyon 52380 at http://kcur.org Could Our Food Supply Be A Target For Terrorists? Hog Virus Causing Spike In Price Of Bacon http://kcur.org/post/hog-virus-causing-spike-price-bacon <p style="margin-bottom: 20px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; font-family: 'PT Sans', sans-serif;">Shoppers are already paying more for pork and bacon than they did last year and many economists expect those prices to continue climbing for the next few months.</p> Mon, 10 Mar 2014 13:18:15 +0000 Peter Gray 52378 at http://kcur.org Hog Virus Causing Spike In Price Of Bacon Ag Data Could Generate Prescriptions For Fields http://kcur.org/post/ag-data-could-generate-prescriptions-fields <p style="margin-bottom: 20px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; font-family: 'PT Sans', sans-serif;">A couple of seeds, some fertilizer, a little sunshine – just add water and you’re ready to harvest your crops, right?</p> Wed, 05 Mar 2014 15:57:34 +0000 Jeremy Bernfeld 52170 at http://kcur.org U.S. Wastes Nearly A Third Of Food Produced http://kcur.org/post/us-wastes-nearly-third-food-produced <p style="margin-bottom: 20px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; font-family: 'PT Sans', sans-serif;">Nearly a third of the food available to be eaten in the U.S. is thrown out instead. And all of that wasted food comes with a steep price tag.</p> Tue, 04 Mar 2014 14:08:22 +0000 Grant Gerlock 52106 at http://kcur.org Farmers Bid Farewell To Big Expense Tax Write-Offs http://kcur.org/post/farmers-bid-farewell-big-expense-tax-write-offs <p style="margin-bottom: 20px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; font-family: 'PT Sans', sans-serif;">It could be yet another sign that the good times are over.</p> Mon, 03 Mar 2014 14:20:03 +0000 Amy Mayer 52053 at http://kcur.org Climate Change Could Be Good News For Some Invasive Plants http://kcur.org/post/climate-change-could-be-good-news-some-invasive-plants <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>Most <a href="http://www.hprcc.unl.edu/publications/files/HighPlainsClimateChangeGuide-2013.pdf">climate models paint</a> a bleak picture for the Great Plains a century from now: It will likely be warmer and the air will be more rich with carbon dioxide. Though scientists don’t yet know how exactly the climate will change, new studies show it could be a boon to some invasive plant species. &nbsp;</p><p><strong>A growing problem</strong></p> Mon, 03 Mar 2014 14:18:01 +0000 Luke Runyon 51965 at http://kcur.org Climate Change Could Be Good News For Some Invasive Plants Farmers Play The Markets, Learn To Avoid Risk http://kcur.org/post/farmers-play-markets-learn-avoid-risk <p>On a frigid winter day, Chad Hart tries to warm his economics students at Iowa State University to the idea of managing some of the risk of farming using the commodity markets. Because, as he told them on the first day of class, farmers don’t make money planting or harvesting crops; they make money selling them. And Hart knows that marketing—managing those sales for the best profit—can be intimidating.</p> Tue, 25 Feb 2014 14:06:07 +0000 Amy Mayer 51790 at http://kcur.org Farmers Play The Markets, Learn To Avoid Risk Young Farmers Wait For Their Opportunity http://kcur.org/post/young-farmers-wait-their-opportunity <p>The&nbsp;<a href="http://harvestpublicmedia.org/article/retirement-not-farm-farmers-working-later">average age of American farmers has been climbing for decades</a>, and many say rural towns are at-risk without new blood. There are enough people who want to farm, but there’s trouble connecting beginning farmers and the communities that need them.</p> Mon, 24 Feb 2014 14:02:16 +0000 Grant Gerlock 51716 at http://kcur.org Young Farmers Wait For Their Opportunity Farmland Real Estate 'Bubble' May Be Ready To Pop http://kcur.org/post/farmland-real-estate-bubble-may-be-ready-pop <p>The so-called farmland real estate bubble appears to be starting to deflate. After years of steep property values, a new report from the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City shows the high times may be coming to an end.</p><p>Since 2011, the price for a plot of a farmland across the Midwest has been growing at breakneck speed. Most of that has been due to the same trajectory in the price of major commodity crops like corn and soybeans. Now, with crop prices slipping, farmers are set to bring in less money. Money they could be using to buy or rent more land.</p> Mon, 17 Feb 2014 14:15:30 +0000 Luke Runyon 51391 at http://kcur.org Making The Leap: How Niche Crops Go Mainstream http://kcur.org/post/making-leap-how-niche-crops-go-mainstream <p>In the Midwest, crop agriculture often gets divided between the major commodities – corn, soybeans and wheat – and everything else. Diverting acres away from a major commodity to an un-tested crop is risky, but sometimes agronomics and market forces meet in a sweet spot and farmers can reap the benefits of innovation.</p> Wed, 12 Feb 2014 15:28:18 +0000 Amy Mayer 51138 at http://kcur.org Making The Leap: How Niche Crops Go Mainstream Spike In Propane Price Worries Midwest Farmers http://kcur.org/post/spike-propane-price-worries-midwest-farmers <p style="margin-bottom: 12px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; font-family: 'PT Sans', sans-serif; line-height: 15px;">Residents across the Midwest are struggling with tight propane supplies, especially in this bitterly cold, snowy winter. But it’s not just homes in rural counties that are lacking adequate heating fuel. Farms that put bacon and eggs on your breakfast plate are also feeling the supply pinch.&nbsp;</p> Mon, 10 Feb 2014 13:56:50 +0000 Peter Gray 51039 at http://kcur.org Spike In Propane Price Worries Midwest Farmers Years In The Making, New Farm Bill Becomes Law http://kcur.org/post/years-making-new-farm-bill-becomes-law <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">&nbsp;&nbsp;</span>President Barak Obama signed the new farm bill into law Friday at Michigan State University in East Lansing, ending years of negotiations and wrangling.</p><p>With farm equipment, hay bales and crates of apples setting the stage, the president told the crowd that this farm bill – <a href="http://harvestpublicmedia.org/article/new-farm-bill-may-be-sight">officially called the Agriculture Act of 2014</a> – will save taxpayer dollars while also offering support to farmers and ranchers. And he says that helps the whole country.</p> Fri, 07 Feb 2014 22:37:08 +0000 Amy Mayer 50959 at http://kcur.org Years In The Making, New Farm Bill Becomes Law USDA Will Set Up Hubs To Help Farmers Adapt To Climate Change http://kcur.org/post/usda-will-set-hubs-help-farmers-adapt-climate-change <p>The U.S Department of Agriculture announced Wednesday it plans to set up seven new research hubs across the country to help farmers adapt to climate change.</p><p>In the past few years, farmers across the Midwest have grappled with epic drought, mega-blizzards and crippling heat.</p><p>“The combination of all those factors convinces me that the climate is changing and it will have its impact,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.</p> Thu, 06 Feb 2014 14:14:37 +0000 Luke Runyon 50868 at http://kcur.org Why Cutting The Ethanol Mandate May Not Ruin The Rural Economy http://kcur.org/post/why-cutting-ethanol-mandate-may-not-ruin-rural-economy <p style="margin-bottom: 12px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; font-family: 'PT Sans', sans-serif; line-height: 15px;">The EPA wants to roll back the amount of ethanol mixed into the fuel supply for 2014, worrying farmers across the Corn Belt. Ethanol supporters warn that if the EPA follows through, the rural economy will take the fall. But many economists predict a soft landing.</p> Wed, 05 Feb 2014 13:28:42 +0000 Grant Gerlock 50808 at http://kcur.org Why Cutting The Ethanol Mandate May Not Ruin The Rural Economy Senate Passes Farm Bill, Sends It To President http://kcur.org/post/senate-passes-farm-bill-sends-it-president <p style="margin-bottom: 20px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; font-family: 'PT Sans', sans-serif;">The U.S. Senate passed the farm bill Tuesday by a vote of 68-32, sending it to the president’s desk and ending years of political wrangling.</p> Tue, 04 Feb 2014 21:31:15 +0000 Jeremy Bernfeld 50776 at http://kcur.org Senate Passes Farm Bill, Sends It To President 2014 Farm Bill Would Change U.S. Ag Policy http://kcur.org/post/2014-farm-bill-would-change-us-ag-policy <p style="margin-bottom: 12px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; outline: 0px; vertical-align: baseline; font-family: 'PT Sans', sans-serif; line-height: 15px;">It’s getting so close now … Last week the U.S. Mon, 03 Feb 2014 14:05:56 +0000 Amy Mayer 50679 at http://kcur.org 2014 Farm Bill Would Change U.S. Ag Policy