Earl Canfield moves an oats bin to the grinder on his farm.

When Being A Family Farm Doesn’t Mean Squat In The Government’s Eyes

The U.S. Department of Agriculture sets an industry definition for family farms. But that definition doesn’t take acreage size into consideration and can include operations where the family may not own the land, or even farm it. It defines what a family farm is for a consistent technical term in research and policy, which includes farm subsidies.

Cargill to pay $1.5 million to settle discrimination charges

Cargill Meat Solutions, headquartered in Wichita, Kan., has agreed to pay $1.5 million to resolve charges of discrimination investigated by the Denver Field Office of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the federal agency announced today.

Twelve things to know about the 2018 Farm Bill

Congressional leaders from the U.S. Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives are continuing to reconcile their versions of the 2018 Farm Bill, a nearly $870 billion spending plan for programs such as trade, commodities, food stamps and conservation. Here’s a look at what's in the proposed 2018 Farm Bill

Since the creation of the World Trade Organization, the U.S. has been involved in 269 trade disputes.

Trade disputes explode under Trump tariff war

As President Donald Trump continues to wage a multi-front trade war with some of the U.S.’ biggest economic partners, farmers have borne some of the heaviest financial burden.

More than a third of trade disputes involving the U.S. relate to agriculture, according to an analysis of disputes submitted to the World Trade Organization since its creation in 1995.

Report: USDA payments to non-farmers remain high

The largest federal farm payments were disproportionately paid to farm operations primarily made up of managers, or those who did not actively work on the farm, according to a new government watchdog report released in May. Farm investors and managers received nearly $260 million in U.S. Department of Agriculture subsidy payments in 2015, the Government Accountability Office reported. The top 19 operations receiving farm subsidies in 2015 had an average of nine managers receiving payments.  

Steve Morris, Director of Natural Resources and Environment for the GAO, said a trend identified in 2013 is still evident in the 2015 data. “When you look at the definition of ‘actively engaged’ and how that’s breaking out, I think some of those patterns remain consistent,” he said.

Organic crops lucrative, challenging for U.S. farmers

Despite a steady increase in demand for organic products among consumers, U.S. crop growers have been reluctant to make the switch from conventional crops, even if it could mean higher profits for farmers struggling with low commodity prices.

Report: U.S. Department of Agriculture can do more to keep pathogens out of meat and poultry supply

A new report released today from a congressional watchdog agency says the U.S. Department of Agriculture can do more to keep foodborne illness-causing pathogens out of meat and poultry products. The Food Safety and Inspection Service, a branch of the agriculture department, inspects approximately 6,500 meat and poultry processing plants nationwide. The inspectors test meat to ensure that salmonella and campylobacter bacteria, two common pathogens that cause roughly 2 million Americans to fall ill and each year, aren’t present in the food supply at unsafe levels. The new report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) found that the process the USDA uses to determine safety standards for pathogens in meat is outdated. The standards for ground beef, for example, have not been updated in more than 20 years, the report said.

Indiana-based farm issues recall for more than 200 million eggs

An Indiana-based company has recalled more than 206 million eggs over reports of illness related to a strain of salmonella. 

Rose Acre Farms of Seymour, Indiana, issued the voluntary recall Friday of eggs produced from its Hyde County, North Carolina farm after an investigation by the Food and Drug Administration traced the rare strain back to the farm.