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April 2021

5 Ways USDA Science Reduces Food Waste

The Economic Research Service estimates that in 2010, America wasted approximately 133 billion pounds of food. That’s the equivalent of every American discarding three average-sized apples every day. Not the “apple a day” advice we’re used to hearing. Today, on Stop Food Waste Day, we’re sharing five examples of how USDA is using scientific ingenuity to curb food loss and waste.

200 Year History of the House Committee on Agriculture

For 200 years, the U.S. House Committee on Agriculture has stood for both growers and consumers in America. To commemorate the Committee's anniversary, USDA’s National Agricultural Library created a digital timeline to highlight key events, members, and legislation in the Committee's history.

Conservation Finance Can Mean Cleaner Air and Water and Healthier Soil

USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is the largest funder of conservation on private land in the United States, supporting producers’ transitions to beneficial farming and ranching practices. While these transitions can require an upfront cost, they also often lead to financial rewards. Healthy and resilient soils, rich with organic material, may lead to more productive crops requiring less fertilizer. And watersheds protected by forests and riverbanks with riparian habitat can lead to cleaner water downstream.

Inside the National Organic Program: Organic Farmer Turned USDA National Organic Program Accreditation Manager Shares Why Organic

What does organic certification really mean for a farm? In Lars Crail’s experience as a central California organic pear farmer turned NOP Accreditation Division Audit Supervisor, going organic transformed his orchard and led to a new career helping others achieve organic success.

Sustainable Farming with Gotham Greens

Sparrows Point, Md., is home to a sustainable greenhouse that is changing the way we grow produce in cities across America. Gotham Greens’ climate-controlled facility is supplying grocery stores throughout the region with fresh produce such as leafy greens and herbs while using a fraction of the natural resources required by traditional farming.

USDA Amplifies Farmers Voices and Concerns Over Transportation and Shipping

Today, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) convened a meeting with representatives of U.S. agricultural products and leadership from the United States Department of Transportation (DoT) to discuss current issues surrounding shipping U.S. agricultural exports, as well as logistical and technical concerns. Participants included a wide range of agriculture stakeholders in the livestock, grains, specialty crop, and dairy industries, as well as representatives from the shipping and value-added sector of U.S. agriculture. The discussion was led jointly by USDA Chief of Staff Katharine Ferguson and DoT Senior Advisor Carlos Monje, the key point of contact for Secretary Buttigieg on this issue.

Celebrate National Garlic Day with Facts about the Popular Cooking Ingredient

Let’s not mince words: Cuisine all over the world includes garlic. No wonder there is an entire day dedicated to the pungent bulb and the sharp flavor it provides. To mark today’s National Garlic Day celebration, check out these facts you may not know about the ingredient:

FAQs on American Rescue Plan Debt Relief for Socially Disadvantaged Borrowers

Earlier this week, we posted important information about the American Rescue Plan debt relief payments for socially disadvantaged producers. The American Rescue Plan includes provisions for USDA to pay up to 120% of loan balances, as of January 1, 2021, for Farm Service Agency (FSA) Direct and Guaranteed Farm Loans and Farm Storage Facility Loans (FSFL).

A Spotlight on the History of Infant Nutrition

Nutrition plays a key role in helping infants to grow into healthy children and adults. Since the early 1900s, USDA has provided resources for breastfeeding, introducing first foods, building lasting healthy eating habits, and more. Explore how infant nutrition advice has changed over the decades with these resources from the Historical Dietary Guidance Digital Collection.

Celebrating 1 Million COVID Vaccines Administered by USDA

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) has reached the milestone of administering one million COVID-19 vaccines throughout the country. This occasion comes on the heels of the Biden-Harris Administration’s announcement that nearly 150 million people in the United States have been vaccinated.