It’s a foregone conclusion amongst food and ag writers that there is something wrong with the way we grow food in America. Paging through the best-selling volumes by Michael Pollan, Mark Bittman, Dan Barber, and others will lead you to one conclusion; there’s a better way to farm out there, and they’ve found it. After you close the book/put down your NYTimes, you’re inevitably left to wonder, if these journalists and chefs found these solutions, farmers must be willfully ignoring them.
We live in an Instagram-ready, organic cold-pressed hemp milk age. To us, the word “farm” brings to mind a rustic (yet modern) retreat where a cornucopia of lusciously crisp fruit and vegetables are picked daily by weathered hands (body optional) and perfectly clean eggs are laid in perfectly clean straw in reclaimed wood barns with just enough dust in the air to create a flawless #nofilter “eggstra” special post. Obviously, some farming is growing fruits and vegetables. But consider your local grocery store.
Perdue plans sweeping changes in how it breeds, raises and slaughters its chickens as consumers demand to know more about their food sources and animal-rights activists have stepped up efforts to uncover abuses in the poultry industry. Perdue, the nation's fourth-largest poultry producer, and its contract farmers will stop raising chickens in crammed, windowless sheds, and instead install windows and increase space to encourage resting, playing and other natural behaviors.
A bipartisan group of 39 senators is calling on the EPA to produce a strong Renewable Fuel Standard when it releases its final rule setting 2017 blending requirements for ethanol and other biofuels later this year. In a letter to EPA chief Gina McCarthy, the senators, led by Republican Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Democrat Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota, said the final rule should support U.S. jobs, reduce the environmental impact on the transportation and energy sectors and reduce dependence on foreign oil.
The price of corn was about $3.25 Friday as agricultural lenders huddled to discuss the industry in today's low-price environment. National estimates are calling for an average price of $4.20 for wheat planted this year, a 16 percent decrease from last year, and soybeans are expected to bring an average of $8.50.Ed Schafer, former North Dakota governor and U.S.
Income inequality has risen in every state since the 1970s and in many states is up in the post–Great Recession era. In 24 states, the top 1 percent captured at least half of all income growth between 2009 and 2013, and in 15 of those states, the top 1 percent captured all income growth. In another 10 states, top 1 percent incomes grew in the double digits, while bottom 99 percent incomes fell. For the United States overall, the top 1 percent captured 85.1 percent of total income growth between 2009 and 2013.
It's widely known that income inequality has grown rapidly in recent decades. As it stands in the U.S., an average member of the top 1 percent of earners makes 25 times more money than an average member of the remaining 99 percent. But this is just a national figure; across the country, the ratio ranges from 5 all the way up to 233. What might be more surprising is precisely where income inequality hits those peaks. Yes, a lot of inequality is where you'd expect it: in big cities along the coasts.
Biotechnology, including the ability to alter living organisms at the genetic level, may be the only answer to the fatal citrus greening disease that threatens the future of the Florida citrus industry.That’s what a leading industry official, Ricke Kress, told about 375 citrus growers and colleagues Thursday morning at the Florida Citrus Industry Annual Conference in Bonita Springs. Kress is president of Southern Gardens Citrus Processing Corp.
State Rep. Byron Cook asked Texas Attorney General to rule on whether a private company developing a high-speed train project in the state has the power of eminent domain. Texas Central Partners has been developing a privately funded bullet train intended to travel between Houston and Dallas in less than 90 minutes. While the project has garnered strong support in those cities, residents in the largely rural communities along the proposed route have voice opposition.
“I think this administration has really missed their chance to do some innovative things, but also to help the rural economy,” Representative Chellie Pingree said on Monday. The Maine Democrat is upset that even as demand for local, sustainable, and organic agriculture has boomed, the Obama administration has done little to support the efforts of small farmers to supply it. In her view, it’s a wasted opportunity. Pingree’s approach reflects a broader shift in how federal policymakers address agricultural policy.