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Farming

America’s Farmers: Resilient Throughout the COVID Pandemic

The disruptive impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the U.S. agricultural system have been broad and varied. And they follow several years of trying production and market conditions for U.S. farmers. In 2017 and 2018, several hurricanes pummeled U.S. farms; 2019 brought historically poor planting conditions and retaliatory tariffs cut potential for our agricultural exports compared to 2017.

The Value of Tribal Agricultural Traditions: A Youth Perspective

Food sovereignty – the ability to create a self-sufficient food system – is at the heart of the opportunities and challenges facing the Navajo Nation. This spring, Diné College students Tyler Begay, Korrie Johnnie, and Orean Roy were recognized for their exploration of this topic during the American Indian Higher Education Consortium Student Conference in Billings, Montana.

Nation’s Wettest 12-Month Period on Record Slows Down 2019 Planting Season

The contiguous United States recently completed its wettest May to April period on record, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Centers for Environmental Information (NOAA/NCEI). From May 2018 to April 2019, an average of 36.20 inches of precipitation fell across the Lower 48 states, 6.25 inches above the 20th century mean. In fact, it was the nation’s wettest 12-month period on record, regardless of which months are chosen.

USDA Continues to Implement Program Changes to Benefit Farmers

Earlier this week, I was honored to meet with members of the National Association of Farm Broadcasters here at USDA headquarters. These women and men, many with decades of broadcasting and farm experience, are among the familiar voices, faces and bylines we hear and see each day through radio, television, newsletters, and social media across America.

Abundant Supplies are Forecast for the Coming Crop Year in the U.S. and Around the World

It’s a new year at USDA, at least for those of us forecasting agricultural commodity markets. Every May, the World Agricultural Outlook Board (WAOB) in the Office of the Chief Economist releases USDA’s initial projections of the markets for the crops and livestock that will be produced and harvested in the new crop year. WAOB develops USDA’s official forecasts by coordinating Interagency Commodity Estimates Committees (ICECs) to compile the latest and most comprehensive information and intelligence available from across USDA agencies. On May 10, USDA released its World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report with these estimates for the 2019/20 crop year. The report also includes updated information on the 2018/19 and previous marketing years, but the early assessment of the “new crop” is a focal point of the May report.

On Farms and Ranches, Every Day is Earth Day

At USDA, we celebrate Earth Day 2019 by offering big thank-yous to farmers, ranchers, and forest landowners for all they do. Every day, we recognize their efforts to conserve natural resources while producing food, fiber, and fuel for people in their communities and around the world. They’re doing what needs to be done to make sure we all enjoy the benefits of clean and plentiful water and healthy soils, ecosystems, and wildlife habitat.