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 »
L-R: Orlando Housing Authority President Vivian Bryant; Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack; Rural Development Florida State Director Richard Machek and Rural Development Florida Single Family Housing Program Director Daryl Cooper participated in a business roundtable in Orlando, Fla., last Friday. They discussed the USDA Rural Development Home Refinancing Pilot Program which is available to USDA borrowers in 19 states.
When most people think of Orlando, Florida, they envision exciting theme parks, Cinderella’s castle and a mouse with big ears. But when USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack visited Orlando on February 24th, it was with a different vision in mind. Read more »
Fans at the Lucas Oil Stadium, pictured here, will be served three flavors of chili made from organic and locally grown ingredients. The USDA’s National Organic Program oversees the certification of USDA organic products. (Photo by Carl Van Rooy)
There’s a new menu item in town for the Super Bowl: white bean chili made with organic beans and vegetables. The push to bring organic and locally-grown options to the concession stand came from a partnership between non-profits that support family farms, celebrities and Centerplate, the NFL’s largest concession provider.
The USDA National Organic Program—within the Agricultural Marketing Service—oversees the certification of USDA organic products. We also certify third-party agents around the world to uphold the integrity of the organic label. Read more »
On Wednesday, USDA Rural Development (RD) Indiana convened a stakeholder outreach meeting to discuss Rural Development priorities for President Obama’s 2013 budget and 2012 Farm Bill. The meeting was held to provide our agency with valuable input as it develops mission area priorities for the upcoming fiscal year.
Over 50 attendees discussed and shared ideology on how Rural Development can enhance program administration and delivery to ensure that rural communities are able to access the critical programs and resources that Rural Development has to offer. Read more »
Petoskey Plastics, owners of a Blackford County-based plastics recycling and manufacturing facility, completed installation last week of a Meteorological (MET) tower at its Hartford City location. The MET tower will measure wind speed, velocity and direction, as well as provide the first precise wind information in Blackford County. The information will also allow Petoskey Plastics to evaluate the feasibility of wind power as a possible source of energy for its Hartford City operations.
With assistance from the Blackford County Economic Development Corporation, Petoskey Plastics applied for and received funding for the wind power feasibility study through the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) from the United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development. Petoskey Plastics was one of 68 recipients nationwide chosen to receive study grants. Read more »
Earlier this week, Judith Canales, Administrator for Rural Business and Cooperative Programs for USDA Rural Development, stopped by the GM assembly plant in Fort Wayne, Indiana, to discuss Flex-Fuel opportunities available to American business owners. Canales’ visit was part of a three-state tour in the Midwest, where she and other representatives of USDA Rural Development promoted the installation of flexible fuel pumps and a program that retail fuel outlets may qualify for to help pay for these pumps.
The USDA chose to include Fort Wayne Assembly on its list of stops because the plant makes pickup trucks that have Flex-Fuel engines as options. Read more »