U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Under Secretary for Farm and Foreign Agricultural Service (FFAS) Michael Scuse (right) tour drought stricken corn fields with Doug Goyings, on the Goyings Farm in Paulding County, Ohio on Tuesday, July 17, 2012. More information at www.usda.gov/drought - USDA photo by Christina Reed.
Visit www.usda.gov/drought for the latest information regarding USDA’s Drought Disaster response and assistance.
This week, as drought conditions continued to expand across two-thirds of the lower 48 states, USDA officials began fanning out to rural communities across the country to show support to farmers and ranchers affected by the drought. As part of the effort, USDA Under Secretary for Foreign and Farm Agricultural Services Michael Scuse visited Indiana, a state now experiencing increasing levels of drought, as most of the state has been designated a natural disaster area by Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. Read more »
Satellite image with enhanced low cloud-top temperatures for 6:45 a.m. EST (NOAA)
Weekend thundershowers provided limited and localized relief to a few Midwestern fields, but most of the Corn Belt remains in dire need of moisture. Currently, very hot weather is building back into the Midwest. High temperatures above 100°F can be expected in portions of the western Corn Belt for the remainder of the week. The eastern Corn Belt should experience some mid- to late-week heat relief, but only scattered showers will accompany the transition to cooler weather. Like last week, substantial drought relief will be confined to the Southeast. Read more »
Earlier this week Deputy Under Secretary for Rural Development Doug O’Brien and Congressman Bruce Braley met with nearly 30 northeast Iowa producers and residents to discuss the important role rural economic development provisions have in the upcoming discussions of the next farm, food and jobs bill.
Iowa producers and residents discuss the impact the next farm, food and jobs bill can have on rural economies with Congressman Braley (in yellow shirt at head of table) and Deputy Under Secretary O’Brien (next to flag).
O’Brien said a goal with the next farm bill is to make it easier for people to access USDA support, ensuring that emerging rural businesses have the capital they need to grow and create jobs, and investing in communities pursuing regional growth. Read more »
It was lights, camera and action as a videographer for the National Rural Economic Developers Association (NREDA) and National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) traveled across eastern South Dakota. Hosted by the Rural Electric Economic Development, Inc. (REED) Fund, video interviews documented the businesses and partners that make REED’s revolving loan fund such a success.
A stop on the tour included Dakota Style, a home grown business located by Clark, SD. Dakota Style started making their own potato chips 25 years ago and has expanded into sunflower seeds and salad toppers. When progress led to a large national contract, they needed space for packaging equipment and storage for shipment. Read more »
As you may know, USDA recently issued its Expenditures on Children by Families, 2011 report, which analyzes the costs of raising a child born in 2011. USDA has been tracking the cost of raising a child annually since 1960. Expenses are examined by the age of the child, household income, budgetary component, and region of the country.
Middle income parents of a child born in 2011 can expect to spend about $234,900 ($295,560 if projected inflation costs are factored in*) for food, shelter, and other necessities to raise a child over the next 17 years. Let’s look at the breakdown: Read more »
Understanding a community’s food environment is key to understanding a community’s identity. But what can a “food environment” tell us?
A community’s food environment is a technical term for assessing information about the who, what, where, and how of food availability in a given community: Who are the people in the community?
What kinds of food outlets are available in their area? How accessible are grocery stores and supermarkets? What are some of the health statistics? Read more »