Mark Hosier, paralyzed from the waist down, uses a mechanical lift to board his tractor. Hosier works with the NIFA-funded AgrAbility Program to overcome disabilities and continue working as an agricultural producer. Photo courtesy of National Swine Registry/Seedstock EDGE.
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 USDA’s rich science and research profile.
Although Mark Hosier was told he’d never walk again, the Indiana farmer is running a 500-acre farm and 10-sow showpig business entirely on his own. Injured in 2006 when a 2,000-pound hay bale rolled off his tractor on top of him and crushed two vertebrae, Hosier thought he wouldn’t be able to continue farming. Today, he operates his tractor with the help of a mechanical lift; modifications to his facilities allow him to care for his hogs from a wheelchair. Read more »
Farmer Doug Goyings examines the drought-damaged corn on his farm in Paulding County, OH on Tuesday, July 17, 2012. USDA photo by Christina Reed.
The 2012 drought dried up more than just crops. For many U.S. farmers, it also dried up savings, material resources, and perhaps saddest of all, hope.
“The drought of course impacted our crop yields tremendously,” said veteran Ohio dairy farmer Leon Weaver. “Corn yields were about 50 percent of normal. Dairymen are exiting this business in droves.”
But for Weaver and nearly one hundred other Ohio, Michigan and Indiana farmers who gathered recently in rural Henry County, Ohio, hope was a commodity worth trading as they shared, in roundtable fashion, their ideas on how to access resources and rise from the dust. Read more »
The new Oakland City water tower and additional improvements are expected to sharply reduce water loss, increase water pressure.
Oakland City, Indiana is the home of Oakland City University, the only General Baptist affiliate university in the nation, with a global campus providing over 40 degrees. An organization of this stature, along with the surrounding community, places a lot of emphasis on faith. Read more »
Under Secretary Dallas Tonsager visits with North Vernon, Indiana residents as they celebrate their new water system, thanks to USDA Rural Development.
U. S. Department of Agriculture Under Secretary for Rural Development, Dallas Tonsager, was in Indiana July 19 and 20, reviewing how the agency’s programs and services are helping create jobs and improve the quality of life in the Hoosier state. Read more »
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 »
Indiana State Office staff members of Natural Resources Conservation Service, Farm Service Agency, Rural Development, and the Risk Management Agency gathered in Indianapolis earlier this week to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Department of Agriculture.
Following a luncheon, “Women in Agriculture and Natural Resources,” Indiana Lt. Governor Becky Skillman congratulated USDA attendees for their ongoing efforts and dedication to Indiana’s rural communities. Additionally, Skillman presented a Proclamation from Governor Mitch Daniels which declared May 15, 2012, as “United States Department of Agriculture Day” in the State of Indiana. Read more »