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  Seems to me the weather has been cooperating nicely with gardening goals: a fairly balanced mix of sun and rain. And, it shows in your photographs of gardens from across the region. The collection today takes us from a school garden in Long...
This corn was nicely mounded and will recover from the wind. Last summer, a severe storm drove through my garden when the corn was about 10 days out from picking. We lost some but salvaged 75% by building a stick and rope lattice system down each...
Several converging experiences over the last week got me to thinking about the role predators play in the food chain and even, it turns out, on the shape of our landscape. It began with my hen house, led to the ridge at the top of my hay field, and...
News flash out of Seattle: the minimum wage has just been raised to $15/hour, by far the highest in the country. Indeed, it’s double or more the rate in Arkansas ($6.25) and about half the states,  almost triple the rate in Georgia and...
We’ve all seen the various charts floating around the interwebz showing which mega-corporations own which food brands. The one posted below came to me via Alex Hillsberg’s blog post which I highly recommend. The gist of his analysis:...


Agriculture
Jul 14, 2014 — Some rookie farmers in northern Michigan are growing saskatoon, a shrub that looks like blueberry. They're also experimenting with it in the kitchen — in jams and pies.
Jul 1, 2014 — The University of California, Davis is the source of most commercial strawberries. Now, the university's strawberry breeders are going into business for themselves, and farmers are worried.
Jun 20, 2014 — Breweries have been providing farmers with free or discounted grain to feed their animals for centuries. But a proposed FDA rule intended to make food safer could disrupt that relationship.
Jun 9, 2014 — Water is scarce in California, and prices are all over the map. Some farmers are paying almost 100 times more than others. Should water flow to the highest bidder?
May 29, 2014 — As Oklahoma enters its fourth year of sustained drought, some farmers expect the harvest to be so bad they'll end up calling their insurance agents and declaring this year a total loss. StateImpact Oklahoma's Joe Wertz reports that some are calling this the worst drought since the '50s — or even since the Dust Bowl.
 

Special Reports

Audio Series
Farm to Farm, Family to Family: David Sommerstein travels with NC dairy farmers to a Mexican village many of their migrant workers call home.
Audio Series
A Year on the Farm
In this monthly feature series, David Sommerstein follows life in the barn, on the fields, and in the farmhouse through the changing seasons on the Andrews dairy farm near Gouverneur NY. This series won the 2006 "Cap" Creal Journalism Award from the New York Agricultural Society.
Audio Series
Hispanic Workers on North Country Farms
Five years ago, just a handful of farmers in the North Country employed Hispanic workers. Now many use workers from Latin America. The transition can be a bumpy one, for farmers and for the people they hire. David Sommerstein tells their stories in this ongoing series.
Beekeeper
Audio Slideshow:
Beekeepers facing new challenges
Lucy Martin visits with Ontario beekeeper Terry McEvoy and talks about colony collapse disorder and other apiary ailments that raise concerns about the food supply.
Audio Slideshow
Sights & Sounds of the Dairy Princess Parade
We go to the sidelines of one of the big events on the annual dairy calendar, the St. Lawrence County Dairy Princess Parade in Canton. Fire engines, tractors, and floats rolled down Main Street on Saturday.
Audio Series
Diversifying North Country Farms
NCPR reporter David Sommestein's series on diversifying North Country farming won the 2003 “Cap” Creal Journalism Award from the New York State Agricultural Society.
Photo Audio Essay
Dairy Farming in the North Country
The time seemed right to look at the challenges facing dairy in the North Country. In part 1 we look at the price of milk, as seen through the eyes of one mid-size dairy farmer. In part 2 we visit a cheese manufacturer proposing drastic changes in the way North Country farmers do business. David Sommerstein reports.
Audio Slideshow
A Barn-Raising in Upper Jay (Real 6:23)
These days, most new barns are built quickly with steel frames and sheet-metal siding. But some landowners are taking a little more time, using methods and materials passed down over hundreds of years.
Photo Audio Essay
Saving New York's Historic Barns
Some of New York's oldest barns are getting facelifts. Todd Moe visited a Canton family's 1820 English threshing barn slated for restoration.

Clinton: Spreading the "Made in NY" Message

David Sommerstein talks with Senator Hillary Clinton about the challenges -- and promise -- of marketing New York farm products in New York City, as well as filling the vacuum to be left in the North Country when Kraft closes its cheese plant in Canton.  Go to full article

NY Farmers Await More Details on Dairy Trade Pact

Dairy farmers are still awaiting the details of a free trade pact signd last month between the United States and Australia. Australia is the world's third largest dairy exporter and dairy farmers in the North Country and across the nation feared a flood of imports.  Go to full article

Farmers Push for Medicaid Reform

Farmers are adding their voices to the chorus of those calling for reform of Medicaid funding in New York. The New York Farm Bureau held seven press conferences across the state yesterday, including one in Canton.  Go to full article

Raw Milk Advocates Petition Small Farmers

Sales are strictly illegal in New York and many other states, but fans of raw milk believe un-pasteurized milk is more nutritious, and more delicious than commercial milk. ...  Go to full article

Food Tracking Gaining Steam?

On the heels of the discovery of mad cow disease in the U.S., North Country Congressman John McHugh is among lawmakers calling for a national animal ID program to track meat....  Go to full article

Kraft Shutdown Ripples, Quietly

In Canton and around St. Lawrence County, news that Kraft's cheese plant will close in June is sinking in. Some 60 people will lose their jobs. Several hundred more jobs...  Go to full article

Possible Fallout of the Kraft Plant Closing

Martha Foley talks with Michael Shuman, a nationally recognized expert in the field of sustainable economics, about what happens when a mainstay business leaves town.  Go to full article

Impact of Trade Pact on NY Dairy Farmers Unclear

North Country dairy farmers are breathing a sigh of relief in the wake of Sunday's free trade agreement between the U.S. and Australia. The National Milk Producers...  Go to full article

NY Farms Fare Better in New Census

The hemorrhaging of farms and farmland in New York is slowing down, according to new data from the agriculture census. Large farms are growing, and a small, niche market...  Go to full article

Wetlands Restoration Faces Cuts

A popular federal program that pays farmers to restore wetlands on their property is under funded in President Bush's proposed budget released this week. As David...  Go to full article

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