#AgAlerts: Losing farms; giant pigs; recovery from wildfires

Ford outlined how sustained low commodity prices now meant that the average farm income in 2017 was $43,000, and that the median farm income for 2018 was minus $1,500. This had pushed bankruptcies in the farm states across the Midwest, which sell half of U.S farm products, to the highest level in a decade.

Opinion: Ag blazing 5 for 2019 (and beyond)

Breaking out major prognostic tools (including an 8-ball, Ouija board, paper fortune teller and dart board...yeah we're high tech around here) here are some of the big agricultural issues on the horizon for 2019.

Opinion: Smithfield may profit from U.S. China trade war

Generally speaking, pork barrel politics amounts to politicians trading favors to constituents or special interest groups for political support, often as campaign contributions. Pork barrel spending, better known as earmarks in federal spending bills, have surged in 2018. Who may be profiting this year? Smithfield Foods.

Large animal feeding operations on the rise
Several states see shifts in animal production since 2011

The number of new concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) have increased across the U.S. over the past six years - bringing the total operations just under 20,000, according to data from the Environmental Protection Agency. From 2011 to 2017, the United States saw more than 1,400 new large-scale concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) established. That’s up 7.6 percent. Here's a look at the issue in maps and charts.

Plan for 20,000-hog facility sparks revolt in western Illinois | Chicago Tribune

Efforts like this one have largely failed during the past two decades as pork producers constructed more than 900 new swine confinements across Illinois, often brushing aside farm families’ concerns about sickening odors, road damage, depletion of wells and fouling of creeks. But this network of farmsteads set amid rolling hills has become the newest battleground where small-town residents are trying to fend off a leading U.S. pork producer