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A Consequence of Our Citizenship

It can be challenging for veterans to find their voice this time of year. That’s understandable. Within an extraordinary community who once wore, or continues to wear the uniform of our country, and their families who stand strong at home, Veterans Day opens a personal window that profoundly touches lives.

Farm to School Success in Hawaii

It takes the right amount of water and sunlight for seeds to grow into a thriving garden. So too, it takes the right mix of factors to integrate local foods into communities. Some of these factors include committed stakeholders, planning, collaboration, and financial resources.

Skills Sown in Military Service Grow at USDA

A rising sun chases away the darkness across the landscape while the hard working men and women start another day to accomplish the tasks that keep America strong. Whether on the battlefield or in the corn field, these dedicated individuals approach life and work in similar ways. That’s why USDA is committed to hiring and retaining military veterans and active military personnel.

Introducing the New USDA Climate Hubs Web Portal

Since 2014, the ten USDA Climate Hubs have been helping farmers, ranchers, forest landowners, resource managers, and rural communities plan for and manage weather- and climate-related risks and vulnerabilities. A key element of that effort has been the distribution of information resources via the Climate Hubs web portal. Our national and regional webpages are important components of our program’s outreach and communications efforts, and complement our on-the-ground work to provide practical, pragmatic, and science-based approaches to address climate change impacts on working lands.

This Weekend, Enjoy National Hunting and Fishing Day

America marks National Hunting and Fishing Day on September 23, 2017. It started when Congress unanimously passed a joint resolution and former President Richard Nixon issued a proclamation on May 2, 1972, urging “all citizens to join with outdoor sportsmen in the wise use of our natural resources and in ensuring their proper management for the benefit of future generations.”

ARS Scientist’s Life-Saving Work Fighting Parasite Earns Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medal Recognition

By probing the life cycles of parasites, Jitender Dubey’s research during the past 40 years has been instrumental in saving lives, curbing disabilities in newborn infants and greatly reducing the number of horses, cattle and lambs killed each year by infectious diseases.

Dubey, a parasitologist with the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) in Beltsville, Maryland, is being honored today as a finalist for a Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medal, also known as the “Sammies.” The Sammies are given each year to federal employees who have distinguished themselves by making our country safer, healthier and stronger.

Earthworms Work Wonders for Soils

Think earthworms are only good for fish bait? Think again! Earthworms play a valuable role in soil health and viability in forests, prairies, gardens and even on farmland.

Earth Day is a good time to recognize earthworms as environmental helpers. They feed primarily on organic material in soils, eating fresh and decaying material from plant roots, including crops like corn and soybeans. As they feed, they move and mix their waste with the soil in a moist, microbe-rich environment. Earthworm tunnels bring in oxygen, drain water and create space for plant roots. Their natural feeding habits mean that small amounts of soil pass through their bodies and, surprisingly, when they excrete it, it is in better condition—what goes in comes out much better!