Latest U.S. Department of Agriculture News

$90M program to support low-income families in Mississippi

Jun. 4, 2020 4:11 PM EDT

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — The U.S. Department of Agriculture has announced a new $90 million program to reimburse families of Mississippi children who usually receive subsidized meals at school but missed out on the benefit due to the coronavirus pandemic. The program will provide assistance to families of...

Editorial Roundup:

Jun. 1, 2020 10:00 AM EDT

The Dallas Morning News. May 31, 2020. Here’s a path forward to cutting Texas’ skyrocketing property tax bills If you’ve owned a home in Texas for any amount of time, you’ve joined thousands who have felt the pinch of skyrocketing property tax bills. And this year, higher appraisals...

Editorial Roundup: New England

May. 29, 2020 6:37 PM EDT

Editorials from around New England: CONNECTICUT Objections welcome, but not time for rebellion The Stamford Advocate May 27 As Connecticut residents have held their breaths for months — some behind masks, some not — it was inevitable that many would eventually exhale bitter frustration. Some acts of...

Northern Maine water district slated for $4M in improvements

May. 28, 2020 1:30 AM EDT

FORT FAIRFIELD, Maine (AP) — The federal government is providing more than $4 million to a utilities district in far northern Maine to make improvements. The U.S. Department of Agriculture said it's providing $4.3 million to the Fort Fairfield Utilities District, which serves an area that abuts New...

Des Moines Area Religious Council Food Pantry worker Patrick Minor pulls a package of ground pork out of a cooler during a pantry stop, Wednesday, May 20, 2020, in Des Moines, Iowa. As food banks have struggled to meet soaring demand from people suddenly out of work because of the coronavirus outbreak, it has been especially troubling to see farmers have to bury produce, dump milk and euthanize hogs. Now some states are spending more money to help pay for food that might otherwise go to waste, the U.S. Agriculture Department is spending $3 billion to help get farm products to food banks, and U.S. senator is seeking $8 billion more to buy farm produce for food banks. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

Efforts underway to get food from US farms to the needy

May. 25, 2020 11:03 AM EDT

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — As food banks have struggled to meet soaring demand from people suddenly out of work because of the coronavirus pandemic, it has been especially troubling to see farmers have to bury produce, dump milk and euthanize hogs. Now some states are providing more money to help pay for food that...

FILE - In this April 20, 2020, file photo, a farmer is silhouetted by the setting sun as a field is planted near Walford, Iowa. U.S. farmers across the nation leaned more heavily upon the federal government last year to finance their agricultural operations amid low commodity prices and trade disputes, and more of the money they borrowed from taxpayers is now delinquent. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette via AP, File)

US farmers leaning more heavily on government loan programs

May. 21, 2020 8:35 PM EDT

BELLE PLAINE, Kan. (AP) — Farmers across the nation leaned more heavily upon the federal government last year to finance their agricultural operations amid low commodity prices and trade disputes, and more of the money they borrowed is now delinquent. Although the U.S. Agriculture Department said it has...

Forecast: Kansas farmers to harvest 284.4M bushels of wheat

May. 21, 2020 6:03 PM EDT

BELLE PLAINE, Kan. (AP) — Kansas farmers are projected to harvest 284.4 million bushels of winter wheat this year, industry leaders said Thursday. The forecast from the annual Wheat Quality Tour, held for the past 50 years by the Wheat Quality Council, came during a virtual wheat tour held via Zoom this...

US lawmakers from agricultural states push for $1B in aid

May. 21, 2020 4:20 PM EDT

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Some New Mexico dairies have reported average monthly losses of more than a quarter-million dollars as fallout from the coronavirus outbreak mounts. Ranchers have seen cattle prices plummet amid supply chain problems, and farmers are starting to worry about potential labor...

FILE - In this May 7, 2020, file photo, workers leave the Tyson Foods pork processing plant in Logansport, Ind. Federal recommendations meant to keep meatpacking workers safe as they return to plants that were shuttered by the coronavirus have little enforcement muscle behind them, fueling anxiety that working conditions could put employees' lives at risk. Major meatpackers JBS, Smithfield and Tyson have said worker safety is their highest priority. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy, File)

Meatpacking safety recommendations are largely unenforceable

May. 21, 2020 9:38 AM EDT

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Federal recommendations meant to keep meatpacking workers safe as they return to plants that were shuttered by the coronavirus have little enforcement muscle behind them, fueling anxiety that working conditions could put employees' lives at risk. Extensive guidance issued last month by...

A pallet of food awaits processing as volunteers work in the background to label cans of beans for redistribution at Roadrunner Food Bank in Albuquerque, New Mexico, on Thursday, May 7, 2020. Demand at food pantries has escalated as the number of New Mexicans applying for unemployment benefits increased for the week ending May 2. New Mexico has processed more than 133,000 claims since mid-March. (AP Photo/Susan Montoya Bryan)

New Mexico likely to reopen restaurants, gyms, malls June 1

May. 20, 2020 11:23 PM EDT

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham set a June 1 target date to restart dine-in service at restaurants and reopen gyms, hair salons and shopping malls at limited capacity. Those businesses have been shuttered since March to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The first-term...