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Agroforestry Means Food Prosperity….and More!

Nicola Macpherson is the owner of Ozark Forest Mushrooms in Salem, Missouri. With the assistance of her state’s forestry agency, a Forest Stewardship Plan was developed to help her sustainably manage the forest and produce wholesome mushroom products at the same time.

Imagine an open field of vegetables and greens, exposed to the sun and the wind on the outskirts of your town.  Now imagine a row of trees sheltering the crops from hot dry winds and producing more marketable melons than in open fields; more snap beans earlier and later in the season when prices are higher. Read more »

USDA Utah Rural Development Participates in Consultation with Tribes

Tribal Consultation:  Front row, left to right, Phillip Chimburas, Ute Indian Tribe; Ernest House, Chairman, Ute Mountain; Leona Eyetoo, South Ute Tribe; Jeanine Borchardt, Chairwoman, Paiute Tribe; Jessica Zufolo, Deputy Administrator, Rural Utilities Service; Forrest S. Cuch, Director, Division of Indian Affairs:  Madeline Greymountain, Tribal Council Member, Confederate Tribes of Goshute Reservations. Back row: Kenneth Maryboy, Navajo, UTL Chair; Dave Conine, Utah State Director, USDA Rural Development; Utah LT. Governor Greg Bell; Leonard Gorman , Executive Director Navajo Nation Human Rights Commission.

Tribal Consultation: Front row, left to right, Phillip Chimburas, Ute Indian Tribe; Ernest House, Chairman, Ute Mountain; Leona Eyetoo, South Ute Tribe; Jeanine Borchardt, Chairwoman, Paiute Tribe; Jessica Zufolo, Deputy Administrator, Rural Utilities Service; Forrest S. Cuch, Director, Division of Indian Affairs: Madeline Greymountain, Tribal Council Member, Confederate Tribes of Goshute Reservations. Back row: Kenneth Maryboy, Navajo, UTL Chair; Dave Conine, Utah State Director, USDA Rural Development; Utah LT. Governor Greg Bell; Leonard Gorman , Executive Director Navajo Nation Human Rights Commission.

USDA Rural Development officials joined Greg Bell, Lieutenant Governor of the State of Utah recently at the 2010 Native American Summit held in Ogden.  This historic gathering provided an opportunity to meet with Utah’s tribal Leaders, and explore the means available for USDA to become a more effective partner in delivering services and addressing tribal needs. Read more »

The Recovery Act in Your Community: Using Terraces to Reduce Erosion and Improve Water Quality

Creating terraces on the Joens farm.

Creating terraces on the Joens farm.

Jim Joens remembers planting crops on the Minnesota farm where he grew up as early as 1973, when he was 14 years old. Even then he knew that farming was what he wanted to be doing, and he’s been doing it ever since. Read more »

Salmon Baby Food Gives a Nutritional Boost to Infants and Toddlers

Just as adults receive nutritional benefits from a diet rich in seafood, babies and toddlers also need the omega-3 fatty acids for brain, nerve and eye development. Researchers at the University of Illinois and the Alaska’s Agricultural Research Service have developed baby food made from salmon to incorporate fish into children’s diets. Photo courtesy of U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Just as adults receive nutritional benefits from a diet rich in seafood, babies and toddlers also need the omega-3 fatty acids for brain, nerve and eye development. Researchers at the University of Illinois and the Alaska’s Agricultural Research Service have developed baby food made from salmon to incorporate fish into children’s diets. Photo courtesy of U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

This post is part of the Science Tuesday feature series on the USDA blog. Check back each week as we showcase stories and news from the USDA’s rich science and research portfolio.

As adults, we have heard for years about the value of adding fish to our diets. But have you ever stopped to consider the health benefits a diet rich in seafood can offer your children? Read more »

USDA Rural Energy for America Program Helps A Pennsylvania Farm Produce Solar Energy

Farmer  David Fink (left), owner of Heidel Hollow Farms shows State Director Tom Williams, how Rural Energy for America Funding will help reduce his farm’s energy costs.

Farmer David Fink (left), owner of Heidel Hollow Farms shows State Director Tom Williams, how Rural Energy for America Funding will help reduce his farm’s energy costs.

I recently joined David Fink, at his Heidel Hollow Farm in Germansville. The family-owned, 1600 crop acre hay farm was awarded two USDA Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) grants totaling $231,230. The grants will be used toward a solar energy project that will provide approximately 252,869 KW of electricity used in the hay compressing operation of the farm. David will also be able to replace one diesel engine with five electric motors, saving over 8,000 gallons of diesel fuel each year.  Both projects will significantly reduce the farm’s energy costs.  Read more »

USDA Business Programs Administrator Promotes Small Business Development in Southwest Louisiana

USDA Administrator for Rural Business and Cooperative Programs, Judy Canales (center);  Rural Development State Director, Clarence W. Hawkins (second from left)  and other officials tour the Game Equipment manufacturing plant.

USDA Administrator for Rural Business and Cooperative Programs, Judy Canales (center); Rural Development State Director, Clarence W. Hawkins (second from left) and other officials tour the Game Equipment manufacturing plant.

The Administrator for USDA’s Rural Business and Cooperative Programs, Judy Canales was in Louisiana recently to tour Game Equipment, a Rural Development –funded project in Donaldsonville.  Louisiana Rural Development State Director, Clarence W. Hawkins; Jeff Jobe, Regional Coordinator of USDA Business programs; Peachy Melancon, wife of Congressman Charlie Melancon; Anne Perry, Regional Representative of Louisiana Economic Development Office (LED); John Broussard, Business and Cooperative Programs  Director; Lee Jones, Assistant to State Director and lenders were also on the tour.  Read more »