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March 2021

Keeping Airline Passengers and Wildlife Safe: APHIS and its Partners Work to Identify Best Management Practices for Wildlife Repellents at Airports

A variety of wildlife species—from birds to rodents and rabbits—often visit airport environments leading to safety concerns for both wildlife and airline passengers. Collisions between wildlife and aircraft have increased in the past 30 years because of an increase in both hazardous wildlife species populations and aircraft movements. To help reduce the risk of these potentially dangerous interactions, USDA-APHIS Wildlife Services (WS) biologists provide airport operators across the Nation with advice and recommendations on how to keep runways and flight paths clear of wildlife.

Sowing the Seeds of Success: Future Leaders in Agriculture

Who are the students pursuing careers in ag? We spoke to college students from minority-serving institutions who recently met (virtually) with USDA officials and partner organizations through the Future Leaders in Agriculture Program. They shared their insights on the event, their studies, and their future careers.

USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service Helps Global Efforts to Reduce Food Loss and Waste: An Interview with Paige Cowie

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) links U.S. agriculture to the world to enhance export opportunities and global food security. Globally, food waste is estimated at 1.6 billion tonnes and arises from many causes from farm to table. In developing countries, these causes include lack of cold-chain storage (refrigeration and freezing, for example), poor-post harvest handling techniques, and lack of access to markets. What is FAS doing to help reduce food loss and waste? This interview features insights from Paige Cowie, Resilient Agriculture Program Manager, USDA Foreign Agricultural Service.

Annual St. Patrick’s Day Shamrock Gift Highlights Relationship Between Ireland and the United States and the Importance of Plant Health

The spirit of The International Year of Plant Health (IYPH) was in full force this St. Patrick’s Day when President Joe Biden was presented with a shamrock bowl by the Irish Taoiseach (Irish for “chief or leader” – pronounced “tee-shuhk”), Micheál Martin, on March 17, 2021 at the White House. The shamrock bowl was delivered to the White House earlier in the week and presented to President Biden virtually. The tradition of this annual gift from the people of Ireland started in the early 1950s when Ireland’s first Ambassador, John J. Hearne, sent a small box of shamrocks to President Harry Truman.

NIFA’s Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program: Helping Consumers Maximize, and Safely Serve and Store the Food They Have

Nutrition security has taken center stage during the pandemic. While many families struggle to put healthy food on the table, it’s important for communities to have resources to help feed and nurture families. That’s why the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) helps people develop the skills needed to prepare foods and learn how to store food in limited spaces.

USDA Science Strengthens U.S. Efforts to End COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic requires a coordinated approach to combat the virus and its rippling effects. We all have a role to play to help end the pandemic. USDA is doing its part by providing evidence-based research and information, its facilities, personnel, and expertise to communities across the country.

Two Sisters Ensure Family Farming Legacy Thrives

I am Brielle Wright, a facilities service technician with APHIS’ Marketing and Regulatory Programs Business Services in Raleigh, North Carolina. Both sides of my families were heavily involved in agriculture. As children we loved being in the garden planting cucumber and cantaloupe. Our great-grandmother, now 103, had persimmon trees, pear trees, pomegranate bushes, and grape vines. We raised pigs, cows, and chickens.