Agriculture

KCUR News
3:04 pm
Mon February 28, 2011

Who's Wearing Those Overalls?

Kansas City, MO – The vast majority of women-run farms are smaller, and focus on niche markets, like grass-fed livestock. Together, Helen Gunderson and Betsy Dahl are breaking into a typical male territory and taking it in their own direction.

Listen to the story at Harvest Public Media

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KCUR News
1:24 pm
Mon February 28, 2011

Redefining the Farm Woman

Kansas City, MO –

Across the Midwest, the landscape of farming is subtly changing hands. As the population ages, one group of farmland owners is growing: widows. In Iowa, women over 65 now own more than a one-quarter of the farmland.

While women have long been a part of farm life, women landowners frequently face unique social and cultural challenges. Advocates say that they haven't always been respected as farm decision makers and leaders. Slowly this is changing.

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KCUR News
11:04 am
Tue February 22, 2011

Investing in Ag 2.0

Jason Tatge in his office at Farms Technology's headquarters in Overland Park, Kan.
(Photo by Tim Lloyd / Harvest Public Media)

Kansas City, MO –

You've probably heard of Web 2.0, but what about Ag 2.0? It's shorthand for the infusion of technology into every facet of the agriculture industry.

Now a fresh crop of entrepreneurs is busy developing technologies that could change the face of farming.

Harvest Public Media's Tim Lloyd profiles one local company that's cultivated a new way for farmers to sell what they grow.

Got your interest piqued?

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KCUR News
9:32 am
Tue February 8, 2011

Grape expectations: Introducing Marquette wine in Iowa

Des Moines, IA –

(Photo by slolee / Flickr Creative Commons License)

Listen to the story

Marquette wine may be the most highly anticipated new product to ever hit Iowa's commercial wine industry.

And it's time has arrived.

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KCUR News
3:23 pm
Fri February 4, 2011

Winter Markets are Heating Up

Bad Seed winter farmers market in Kansas City, Mo.
(Photo by Eric Durban)

Kansas City, MO –

Bad Seed, which is open every Friday from May through February, is one of a handful of Kansas City winter markets and part of a nationwide trend. The number of winter farmers markets has increased 17 percent in the last two years, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. As more small farmers find ways to grow produce in the winter, they're finding a home at winter markets.

Read and listen to the story at Harvest Public Media.

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KCUR News
2:13 pm
Mon January 3, 2011

Deadline Approaches For Giant Hog Producer To Reduce Foul Smells

Kansas City, Missouri – December 31st is the deadline for Premium Standard Farms - the meat producing conglomerate recently purchased by Smithfield Foods - to install new, odor-reducing technology in it's 365 giant hog barns in North West Missouri.

 

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Harvest Public Media
1:39 pm
Mon December 6, 2010

Black Farmers' Experience Captured by Photojournalist

Kansas City, MO – The U.S. Senate recently approved funding for a second round of settlements for black farmers who missed their first opportunity to receive compensation for years of discrimination. Photojournalist John Ficara spent four years documenting the lives of black farmers while working on his book Black Farmers in America. He spoke with Harvest Public Media's Jessica Naudziunas about his experience.

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Harvest Public Media
3:46 pm
Mon October 11, 2010

Edamame, Ed-a-mommy, Eda who?

Iowa –

As the soybean harvest winds down in Iowa, there's growing interest in ramping up production of a different kind of soybean, one that is aimed solely at human consumption.

Two carloads of food writers, news reporters and chefs recently joined a field trip to a farm outside of Corning, Iowa to learn more about edamame, the Japanese word for a special variety of green soybeans. Often found in Asian and health food recipes, it is no longer just a novelty. They're in the frozen food isle of many grocery stores.

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KCUR News
4:05 pm
Tue September 28, 2010

Rain Doesn't Delay Crop Harvests in Missouri

Jefferson City, MO – The heavy rainfall and flooding in parts of the Midwest have so far not delayed crop harvests in Missouri. Last year's drenching rains led to late corn and soybean harvests and prevented farmers in Missouri from planting winter wheat. Gene Danekas with the U.S.D.A. says this year's situation is not as severe.

"42 percent, almost half of the corn, has been harvested, that's well over 3 weeks faster than we were last year," says Danekas. "I know there's some wet fields, especially after this last week, so that'll probably slow them down somewhat."

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Harvest Public Media
3:53 pm
Thu September 23, 2010

Fed Funds Target Rural Rebirth

Harvest Public Media
9:14 am
Tue September 21, 2010

Generating New Connections

Matt Peters and John Lase found each other through the FarmOn program run out of Iowa State University.

Kansas City, Mo – In the next decade or so, much of the Midwest could be facing some big changes in land ownership. More than half the farmland in some states is owned by people age 55 and older.Keeping family farms in family hands is a real concern for some of these farmers.

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KCUR News
9:14 am
Mon September 20, 2010

Black Farmers Again Seek Settlements From Decade-Old Discrimination Lawsuit

Talmadge West plucks a walnut from a tree on his farm in Hayti, MO on Wednesday, August 25.
Photo by Polina V. Yamshchikov

Columbia, Mo –

Talmadge West has returned to the rural Bootheel to retire. Though his family legacy is rooted in corn, soybeans and cotton native to this part of the state, West doesn't farm. He's kept his family history alive with a garden. He walks around his backyard, eating a meal along the way.

From the beginning, West says, black farmers in Pemiscot County were set up to struggle.

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KCUR News
12:46 pm
Thu September 16, 2010

Kansas Backed Company Will Win Big By Vaccinating More Birds

Lenexa,Kansas – Congressional hearings on the salmonella outbreak will take place next week in Washington.

The goal- to try and understand what happened to cause the recent recall of almost half a billion eggs, and subsequent illness of hundreds of people. Congress will further look at ways to prevent an outbreak from happening in the future.

Members of the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee will hear from victims of salmonella, as well as poultry producers.

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KCUR News
12:38 pm
Thu September 16, 2010

Food Safety and Animal Health

Kansas City, Mo –

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KCUR News
1:54 pm
Wed July 28, 2010

Kansas Biosciences Get Boost From Partnership With USDA

The Kansas Bioscience Authority said at its annual meeting this week that the USDA will partner with Kansas to promote bioscience research.

The KBA says the partnership is a huge benefit to existing efforts to collaborate with local and state governments. The KBA also collaborates extensively with venture capital companies. The KBA has invested 50 million dollars in bioscience research, and has attracted a number of firms to the area who have promised to invest up to 200 million dollars.

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KCUR News
9:41 am
Fri May 14, 2010

Urban Agriculture Debate Continues In KC

Kansas City, Mo. – Kansas City's city council still hasn't finalized a ordinance on community gardens and urban agriculture, but it did complete public hearings on the subject yesterday.

A number of center-city groups and businesses that help low income neighborhoods are emerging as supporting the ordinance to encourage better nutrition and economic opportunities in the inner city.

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KC Currents
1:18 pm
Mon May 3, 2010

KCMO Council Considers Nurturing Urban Agriculture

Brooke Salvaggio at Bad Seed, the urban farm she started at Bannister Road and State Line Road. Photo by Sylvia Maria Gross / KCUR.

Kansas City, Mo. – Locally-grown produce is becoming increasingly popular around the country, but in Kansas City, not everyone seems to want food grown as locally as next door. The city council is considering an ordinance to foster urban agriculture.

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KC Currents
5:09 pm
Tue March 30, 2010

KU Researchers Study Native Kansas Medicinal Plants

Lawrence, Kan. – Now that it seems spring may have really begun, farmers and gardeners are making plans to grow food and ornamental plants. But an ambitious new project at the University of Kansas has researchers tilling the soil in hopes of growing medicine. KC Currents' Alex Smith went to Lawrence this week to find out more.

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KCUR News
9:50 pm
Thu March 25, 2010

KCUR Receives Major CPB Grant

Kansas City, Mo. – The Corporation for Public Broadcasting announced KCUR will be one of seven stations receiving grants to create local journalism centers.

KCUR will work with five public media partners in Kansas, Missouri, Iowa and Nebraska to cover agribusiness.

CPB President Patricia Harrison said at a press conference in Washington D.C. that CPB is committed to local news.

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The Economy Project
10:42 am
Fri March 12, 2010

Obama Administration Scrutinizes Big Ag

Jim Foster ponders the future of his independent hog operation.
Frank Morris

Kansas City, MO – It looks like banking isn't the only industry coming in for some added regulatory scrutiny from the Obama administration. US Attorney General Eric Holder and Agriculture secretary Tom Vilsack have launched a series of workshops probing anti-trust issues in agriculture. Some big agribusiness firms say the forums will showcase a well functioning, free market. But, many producers think they'll expose a system increasingly hostile to the traditional family farm.

GET BIG OR DIE

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Tracking NBAF
2:39 pm
Fri February 26, 2010

K-State Wins DHS Center To Study Animal Diseases

Kansas City , Mo. – The latest feather in the cap for the so-called "animal health corridor" is the Center of Excellence for Emerging and Zoonotic Animal Diseases, or CEEZAD.

The center is a $12 million dollar investment by the Department of Homeland Security at K-State. It will compliment the work of the National Bio and Agro Defense Facility. The so-called NBAF is the high-security lab Manhattan recently won in a competitive bidding process that will be researching foreign and domestic animal diseases and vaccines.

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KCUR News
10:11 am
Thu January 14, 2010

DOJ Turns Up Heat In Monsanto Anti-Trust Probe

Farmer Luke Ulrich
Frank Morris

Kansas City, Mo. –

Luke Ulrich, who grows corn and soybeans south of Lawrence, is thinking about spring. It's time to buy seed again, but hundreds of seed companies have gone under in the last two decades.

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Tracking NBAF
12:00 am
Fri November 13, 2009

Animal Health Corridor Eager For Development

If you feed your dog Science Diet or protect him with the flea and tick control Advantix, you’re using products made in the Animal Health Corridor.

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KCUR News
10:25 pm
Thu October 29, 2009

China Lifts Import Ban, Missouri Pork Producers Relieved

Prof, Ron Plain says the name Swine Flu has cost the US pork industry almost a billion dollars.
Frank Morris

Kansas City, MO – For the last couple of years, feed prices have been so high that US farmers lost money on almost every pig they raised. China was one of the bright spots for US producers, their third largest, and fastest-growing export market. But H1N1 put a stop to that. Chinese officials said they were worried about catching "SWINE" flu from eating US pork, even though you can't. It was just cover, according to Ron Plain an agricultural economics professor at the University of Missouri.

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Tracking NBAF
1:45 pm
Wed October 21, 2009

Senate Approves $32 Million For Kansas Bio-defense Lab

Kansas City, MO – The U.S. Senate has approved $32 million for a massive Kansas lab aimed at research on foot-and-mouth and other diseases.

The money is in the Homeland Security Appropriations bill that the Senate approved on a vote of 79-19 Tuesday. The House has already approved the $44.1 billion compromise spending bill, which is headed to President Barack Obama.

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Tracking NBAF
9:43 am
Thu October 8, 2009

Committee Approves Money For Bio-Defense Lab

Kansas City, MO – Legislation to fund construction of a federal research lab in Kansas has moved forward. Federal officials chose Manhattan, Kansas late last year as the site for the National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility.

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The Economy Project
1:36 pm
Mon August 17, 2009

Farm Economy Looks Good; Activists Still Concerned

Kansas City , Mo. – Reports from the federal government last week underscore optimism about the farm economy. But for farm activists, there are lingering concerns.

The US Department of Agriculture and Federal Reserve reports suggest the farm economy is in relatively good shape. Among the reasons are stabilizing land and commodity values, greater demand for corn-based fuel because of higher prices for crude oil, and the potentially record crop harvests.

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KCUR News
11:04 am
Mon July 6, 2009

Farmers Take On Food, Inc.

Kansas City, MO – Food, Inc., a documentary film about the modern agricultural industry, is a hit with big-city movie reviewers, small-scale organic farmers and vegetarians. Full of disturbing scenes depicting chickens, hogs and cattle being crowded into confined areas, the movie argues that large-scale agriculture produces inexpensive meat and vegetables at a high cost to the environment - as well as Americans' health.

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KCUR News
2:01 pm
Tue May 26, 2009

Pork Producers Face Uncertain Future

Kansas City, Missouri – The conversation among pork producers these days is about how to survive the H1N1 crisis.

When the Centers for Disease Control released the first report of swine flu in late April, hog prices tumbled more than 17%.

Public health officials know the new strain began with swine, but beyond that, they know little about how it will behave.

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