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About The Center

The Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting is an independent, nonprofit newsroom devoted to educating the public about crucial issues in the Midwest with a special focus on agribusiness and related topics such as government programs, environment and energy.

May 4, 2010 | https://investigatemidwest.org/about/

A 10-minute delay of key USDA reports gave some people an advantage. Here’s why.

Each month, the United States Department of Agriculture releases a series of reports that analysts, grain traders, investors and farmers use to make decisions or buy and sell commodities.

But on Friday, November 8, two of those USDA reports - World Agriculture Supply and Demand Estimate (WASDE) and the Crop Production report – were delayed by at least 10 minutes.

November 19, 2019 | https://investigatemidwest.org/2019/11/19/a-10-minute-delay-of-key-usda-reports-gave-some-people-an-advantage-heres-why/

Agriculture is one of the biggest contributors to climate change. But it can also be a part of the solution.

The global food production system, which includes agriculture, accounts for more than a third of manmade greenhouse gases, according to an August report from the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

And while past focus has been on industries such as fossil fuels and transportation, new attention is being put on agricultures role in the climate change solution. On September 18, a coalition representing 10,000 farmers and ranchers delivered a letter to congress supporting the Green New Deal, a congressional resolution to transition the United States to 100 percent clean energy by 2030.

Farming, more than any other industry, might be the best hope for curbing climate change. September 27, 2019 | https://investigatemidwest.org/2019/09/27/agriculture-is-one-of-the-biggest-contributors-to-climate-change-but-it-can-also-be-a-part-of-the-solution/

Kraft, Mondelez agreed to pay $16 million for allegedly manipulating the wheat market. Now, they’re complaining the feds talked about it.

Two of the biggest food companies in the U.S. were fined a $16 million penalty for allegedly manipulating the wheat market for its own gain as part of a settlement agreement reached in August. When the federal agency posted a news release about it, the two food companies complained the agency broke its part of the agreement.

September 4, 2019 | https://investigatemidwest.org/2019/09/04/kraft-mondelez-agreed-to-pay-16-million-for-allegedly-manipulating-the-wheat-market-now-theyre-complaining-the-feds-talked-about-it/

USDA rural broadband investment tops $200 million in 2018

The USDA has announced plans for a pilot program to bring broadband internet to all of rural America.

The plan, which Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue calls a “proof of concept,” will provide $600 million dollars in grants and loans to internet service providers to bring connection to parts of the country that are too remote, underpopulated or expensive to serve.

January 9, 2019 | https://investigatemidwest.org/2019/01/09/usda-rural-broadband-investment-tops-200-million-in-2018/