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In Conversation with #WomeninAg: Shawna A. Legarza

Every month, USDA shares the story of a woman in agriculture who is leading the industry and helping other women succeed along the way. This month, we hear from Shawna A. Legarza. Shawna is currently the Director of Fire and Aviation Management for the U.S. Forest Service. Shawna was raised on a cattle ranch in Northern Nevada and entered the firefighting profession as an engine crewmember for the Bureau of Land Management. She has 29 years of experience in fire and aviation management and has held numerous leadership positions in a wide variety of regions for both the Bureau of Land Management and the USDA Forest Service.

Shedding New Light on Stink Bug Invasion

The invasive brown marmorated stink bug causes problems for homeowners and farmers and threatens U.S. specialty crops valued at over $20 billion. Farmers rely on insecticide sprays to reduce crop-damaging stink bugs. Another strategy is using traps with lures to capture this pest.

Don’t Make Turkey Frying a Disastrous Situation This Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Day is full of family get-togethers, giving thanks, lots of food and some turkey deep frying horror stories. From homes burning down to turkeys skyrocketing into the air, safely preparing and frying a turkey doesn’t have to be dangerous. To avoid becoming one of these Thanksgiving Day horror stories, and to make sure you fry that centerpiece safely to avoid foodborne illness, USDA offers advice on properly preparing and frying your turkey safely.

RIPEning the Possibility of a Food Secure Future

The UN recently released a report stating that world hunger is once again on the rise, with 815 million people now hungry. That is roughly two and a half times the population of the United States. To this end, the UN lists “zero hunger” near the top of its list of Sustainable Development Goals, only behind “no poverty” at number one.

New Infographic Spreads the Word about Butter Grading

It’s the time of year when many of us start thinking about holiday baking and cooking.

Whether it’s roasting a turkey with all the trimmings for Thanksgiving dinner or batches of cookies and other baked goods to share with loved ones, butter is often a key ingredient in our favorite recipes.

Spook-tacular Healthy Halloween Ideas: USDA Evidence-Based Ideas for a Healthy and Safe Halloween

“Trick-or-treating” or more recently “Trunk-or-Treating” is a Halloween custom for many American families. According to the US Census Bureau 2015 Population Estimates, there are an estimated 41.1 million potential trick-or-treaters – children ages 5 to 14 – across the United States. Of course, children younger than 5 years old and older than 14 (adults included) enjoy celebrating Halloween.

Landowners in Deep South Protect 700,000 Acres of Wetlands with USDA Help

Private landowners in Arkansas, Mississippi and Louisiana have protected 700,000 acres of critical wetlands in the past 25 years, which accounts for one-third of all wetlands under USDA conservation easements in the country. USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and several conservation partners recently celebrated this milestone by visiting one of the landowners who used a conservation easement to restore and permanently protect the wetland.

USDA Found “Recipes for Success” in Local Schools during National School Lunch Week

Nourishing food is fundamental to a healthy future for America’s children. Earlier this month, we celebrated the important role of school lunches, and the professionals that serve them in schools throughout the nation. The President proclaimed October 8-14 as National School Lunch Week in recognition of “the benefits that school lunch programs offer to our communities and to our Nation's future.” Over the course of the week, USDA leaders headed out to local schools to join children for lunch, and learned more about those schools’ “Recipes for Success” – the theme of the week.

A Source of Hope, Investing in Prosperity

In the early 2000’s, shopping malls were often a pinnacle of growth and prosperity in rural America. In the recent years we’ve seen the decline of so many of these rural establishments. These shopping centers were once a sign of success in rural communities, but now sit, falling apart, as disheartening archetypes of a dying era.