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High Tunnels: A Three-Year Pilot Practice

USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service supported the construction of over 4,200 high tunnels on farms throughout the country in 2010 and 2011.

As a heat wave consumes much of the country, especially here in Washington, DC, winter seems a long way off—unless you’re a farmer.  For the 2.2 million farms that grow our nation’s food, fiber, and fuel, it’s likely a good time to be thinking ahead to the upcoming harvest and preparing for the colder months.  One thing that may come to mind is a high tunnel, or a hoop house. Read more »

Value Added Grant Will Help Minnesota Winery Reach More Customers

Written by Adam Czech USDA Minnesota Public Affairs Specialist

If Tami and Kim Bredeson have their way, Minnesota will be known as more than just the Land of 10,000 Lakes. It also will be recognized for its wineries and vineyards.

The Bredeson’s own Carlos Creek Winery in Alexandria, Minn. During a special event on July 12, USDA Minnesota Rural Development State Director Colleen Landkamer recognized Carlos Creek for receiving a Value-Added Producer Grant. The grant will help Carlos Creek grow its customer base and increase distribution of its locally produced wines. Read more »

USDA Grant Helps Tribal College Grads Gain Needed Workplace Skills

By Jill Lee, National Institute of Food and Agriculture

Jim Hafer’s passion for teaching is second only to his savvy in leveraging opportunity.  He noticed many retirements at the local power plant and coal mines and saw opportunity for his agriculture students at Chief Dull Knife College in Lame Deer, Mont. With funding from the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), he decided to train students to fill the upcoming talent gap. Read more »

USDA Master Gardeners Tour Village of Herbal Healing

By Tanya Brown, Farm Service Agency

To the untrained eye, a trip through Jim Duke’s Herbal Village in Fulton, Md., looks like a homestead for weeds and other unwanted vegetation. But for a group of master gardeners from the People’s Garden initiative, it was a journey through the land of healing.

“It gave me a deeper appreciation for the work done at USDA,” said Linda Parker, master gardener from Forest Service. “It’s a different part of USDA than what I’m used to seeing.” Read more »

USDA Partners with USAID to End Global Hunger with Science and Innovation

By Anita Regmi, USDA Research, Education, and Economics

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.

Living and traveling through rural South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa, I have seen firsthand the challenges faced by many families as they strive to eke out a livelihood off a small, unyielding patch of land.  The difficulties faced by such families will only become more severe as climate change, population growth, and increased use of arable land to produce alternative uses for food such as biofuels erode food availability. Read more »

USDA Rural Development Recovery Act Investment Brings Broadband to Thousands of Residents of Iowa and Missouri

By Bill Menner and Janie Dunning, USDA Rural Development State Directors of Iowa and Missouri

Bringing broadband to rural communities is about more than guaranteeing your daughter has 24/7 access to Twitter, or giving your son unlimited opportunities to play video games. Read more »