Latest U.S. Department of Agriculture News

City gardens, public produce stands ease 'food desert' woes

Sep. 20, 2019 11:02 AM EDT

ATLANTA (AP) — On his way home, Darnell Eleby paused before boarding the commuter train in Atlanta's Five Points station and maneuvered his wheelchair to a stop not seen on many mass transit platforms: a fresh food stand stocked with colorful fruits and vegetables. Aided by a volunteer, he filled a basket...

US approves releasing non-native insect to control thistle

Sep. 18, 2019 4:25 PM EDT

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Federal officials have approved turning loose a non-native insect to feed on an invasive thistle that sprouts in everything from rangelands to vineyards to wilderness areas, mainly in the U.S. West. The U.S. Department of Agriculture said Tuesday it will permit use of the weevil native...

China releases stockpiled pork to cool price surge

Sep. 18, 2019 2:29 AM EDT

BEIJING (AP) — China's government is releasing pork from stockpiles to help cool surging prices ahead of Oct. 1 celebrations of the Communist Party's 70th anniversary in power. The price of pork, China's staple meat, has soared almost 50% from a year ago due to a devastating outbreak of African swine fever...

Pork slaughter rules give companies more food safety tasks

Sep. 17, 2019 4:45 PM EDT

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The federal government finalized a new rule for most U.S. pork processing plants Tuesday that allows meatpackers to remove limits on the speed of production lines and place more animal inspection and food safety tasks with company employees. The first significant processing rule...

Officials: Feral Canadian hogs encroaching on Montana border

Sep. 10, 2019 7:02 PM EDT

KALISPELL, Mont. (AP) — Wildlife officials say feral hogs from Canada encroaching on Montana's northern border are a serious concern for farmers and others. Daily Inter Lake reported Sunday that the U.S. agriculture department's Wildlife Services division says there have been multiple reports of feral hogs...

UK worries Brexit could bring 'chlorinated chicken' from US

Sep. 8, 2019 12:52 PM EDT

NEW YORK (AP) — Could Brexit bring America's "chlorinated chicken" to the United Kingdom? The European Union has long refused to import poultry from the United States that is routinely rinsed with chemical washes to kill germs. But the United Kingdom's planned exit from the EU is putting the practice back...

GAO: Interior broke law in reopening parks during shutdown

Sep. 5, 2019 8:11 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — Leaders of the Trump administration's Interior Department violated federal law in dipping into user fees to reopen national parks during last winter's government shutdown, a government watchdog agency concludes in a scathing legal opinion that warns officials risk fines and prison if they...

US farmers hope Trump delivers on trade deal with Japan

Sep. 5, 2019 12:37 AM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — American farmers have not only endured retaliatory tariffs from China and other nations, they've watched as most of their top foreign competitors used free trade agreements to make inroads into Japan, a historically protectionist market with nearly 127 million consumers. Now they're...

250 pigs escape; most back, some with help from hot dog buns

Aug. 29, 2019 10:07 PM EDT

ORANGE, Vt. (AP) — About 250 pigs have been causing a ruckus in a Vermont town the past month after they escaped from their enclosure, but most of them had been returned as of Thursday thanks in part to a trail of hot dog buns and good ol' fashioned corralling. Several farm workers and a couple of...

Farmers' loyalty to Trump tested over new corn-ethanol rules

Aug. 29, 2019 10:54 AM EDT

LACONA, Iowa (AP) — When President Donald Trump levied tariffs on China that scrambled global markets, farmer Randy Miller was willing to absorb the financial hit. Even as the soybeans in his fields about an hour south of Des Moines became less valuable, Miller saw long-term promise in Trump's efforts to...