USDA Designates $58.25 Million for Plant Pests, Disease

Kelly Marshall Leave a Comment

The USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) will be designating $58.25 million from the 2014 farm bill to fund 434 projects that will help protect U.S. crops from plant pests and diseases. “Through the Farm Bill we are working with our partners and stakeholders to not only ensure the global competitiveness of our specialty crop producers but to …

pesticides, Research, USDA

Crop Insurance Takes Hit in Budget Proposal

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

The Obama administration’s 2017 budget proposal includes reforms to the crop insurance program that would end up costing farmers more. Two specific changes are proposed – one would reduce subsidies for revenue insurance policies that insure the price at the time of harvest and the second would reform prevented planting coverage, including removing optional buy-up coverage. According to USDA, the …

Government, Insurance, USDA

USDA Awards $20 Million for Citrus Research

Kelly Marshall Leave a Comment

The citrus greening crisis in Florida and across the U.S. is receiving $20.1 million dollars to bring growers closer to a solution.  The USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) awarded the grants to university researchers and extension projects working to fight Huanglongbing (HLB) or greening disease. “Citrus greening has affected more than 75 percent of Florida citrus crops …

Research, specialty crops, USDA

Vilsack Discusses 2017 Budget for USDA

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack hosted a national media Tuesday call to discuss the Obama administration’s 2017 budget request for USDA programs. “Over the past seven years, USDA has made strides in improving the health of our nation’s children, enrolled a record number of privately-owned acres in conservation programs, bolstered the economies and infrastructure of small rural towns, and more,” said …

Audio, Government, USDA

USDA Pledges $9M Towards Wetlands

Taylor Truckey

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has announced the establishment of the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Wetland Mitigation Banking Program, made possible by the 2014 Farm Bill. The program will provide $9 million to help states, local governments or other qualified partners develop wetland mitigation banks that restore, create, or enhance wetland ecosystems, broadening the conservation options available to farmers and …

Environment, politics, Sustainability, USDA, Water

Deputy Secretary Harden to Leave USDA

Cindy Zimmerman

USDA Deputy Secretary Krysta Harden today announced plans to depart the agency at the end of next month. “Today is bittersweet for me as I announce my decision to step down as Deputy Secretary at the end of February,” said Harden in a statement. “I am proud of what our Department has accomplished since 2009 to bring economic opportunity that …


Bio-Oil Produced Right on the Farm

Joanna Schroeder

Soon farmers will be able to produce bio-oil right on their farm. The renewable fuel can be produced from agricultural and food waste using a new mobile unit. The goal of USDA project is to be able to distill this bio-oil in existing petroleum refineries. The research team, headed by Agricultural Research Services (ARS) chemical engineer Akwasi Boateng with the …

Agribusiness, Biofuels, biomass, Renewable Energy, USDA

Chile & Peru Slated for Stops on USDA Trade Mission

John Davis

Two South American countries have been slated for a U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) trade mission. This news release from the agency says Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack will lead a trade mission March 14-18 to expand export opportunities for U.S. agriculture in Chile and Peru. “Thanks to existing free trade agreements, the United States enjoys strong trading relationships with both …

International, Trade, USDA

Ag Secy Vilsack Talks SOTU, Trade & Climate

Joanna Schroeder

USDA Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack held a press call yesterday to discuss President Obama’s last State of the Union (SOTU) address. Vilsack, who has served in the capacity of Ag Secretary throughout Obama’s Administration, was in attendance during the speech. He said he is very proud to have been part of an administration that has basically taken the country from …

Audio, Climate Change, politics, Trade, USDA