Jan 22, 2014 — Farmers can now deliver data from their fields, minute by minute, to big agribusiness companies like Monsanto or John Deere. Those companies promise to use the data to help farmers make money. But some farmers worry that it could threaten their privacy and give the big companies too much power.
Jan 20, 2014 — The U.S. Department of Agriculture says the infrastructure for local food is lacking but growing fast. "Food hubs respond to that call," one official says.
Dec 31, 2013 — Across the country, there's a wave of interest in local food, and a new generation of young farmers wants to grow it. But many aren't buying land. Instead, they're renting it.
Dec 27, 2013 — Scientists and growers are in a bitter fight against citrus greening, a disease that has devastated Florida's orange and grapefruit crops. They fear that unless scientists find a cure for greening soon, it's just a matter of time before economic realities and the disease force growers out of business.
Dec 22, 2013 — Over the past decade, the government has been paying farmers to keep their land covered with native grasses instead of crops. But as grain prices have risen, the conservation reserve has shrunk by more than 25 percent. This decline in native grasslands means more soil erosion and less habitat for wildlife.
Dec 11, 2013 — When it comes time to fertilizing a cornfield, most farmers use huge machines that weigh at least 10 tons. But three brothers in Minnesota have created a tiny robot they say can do the same job much more efficiently.
Oct 15, 2013 — There's a lot of uncertainly in the air as harvest season gets into full swing across the Midwest. But this is a time of year when farm families come together to focus on the big task at hand.
Oct 14, 2013 — Michigan is expected to bring in a record-setting apple crop this year. So how do you sort and package 2,000 Galas in a minute? Farmers have turned to the Rolls Royce of fruit processing: a robot that uses computer vision to weed out the bad apples.
Oct 2, 2013 — The grain hasn't quite taken off yet, partly because of perception issues. But farmers are optimistic that the grain, which is high in protein and gluten-free, can compete with quinoa.
Aug 9, 2013 — Picking berries is hard, sometimes backbreaking work. But consumers rarely consider the physical labor required to deliver them fresh fruits and vegetables. In a new book, a medical anthropologist argues that farmworkers deserve better health care.