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Tornado Devastates NFC Building, But Not NFC Workers

Within minutes of being notified of an impending storm, the employees of the US Department of Agriculture’s National Finance Center (NFC) in New Orleans felt the devastating impact of the EF-3 tornado that descend upon the two-story building with enough force to tear away whole sections of the brick façade in eight places and leave portions of its interior exposed to the elements.

“I could see it coming,” said Tara Gilliam, chief of Human Resources Management Staff. “It swallowed the building in a matter of seconds.”

Continuing the Challenge: Achieve MyPlate Everyday

Congratulations to everyone who joined us for the MyPlate New Year’s Challenge! Over the course of these last five weeks, participants incorporated each of the MyPlate food groups - dairy, fruits, vegetables, protein foods, and grains - into their days in an effort to find and maintain a healthy eating style while being physically active. Over 400 people took on the MyPlate-sponsored challenge, and many others used SuperTracker to host their own challenges.  To all of you we say, “Way to go!” You all proved that making small changes to your daily routine can lead to big wins for your health.

Five Signs You Might Be the Perfect 'Soil Mate'

The hope in healthy soil is taking root across America.

Farmers, ranchers, researchers, conservationists, non-profit organizations, foodies and others are all working to help regenerate our working lands by improving the health of function of our nation’s soil. So inspired by what they’re learning about the hope in healthy soil, there’s a whole new generation of “soil mates” working to unlock the secrets in the soil.

USDA Scientific Integrity Policy Scores "Top Grade" in New Report

“Top grade,” “strong,” “substantially strengthened,” and “significantly improved,” may sound like reviews you might read about consumer products such as smart phones or televisions. However, these are the actual terms used by the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) in its recent review of USDA’s updated Scientific Integrity Policy.

How 4-H Rocks for Missouri Youth of All Abilities

4-H is about more than barnyard animals, it’s about emerging sciences, like rocketry and geographic information systems.  4-H is also about leadership, citizenship, and many other things, but one quality truly stands out: 4-H is about inclusion.

In Missouri, 4-H clubs take an inclusive approach to working with youth who have special needs. “We don’t have set-aside or separate programs or activities for youth with special needs,” said Alison Copeland, campus 4-H specialist with University of Missouri Extension. “Rather, we provide our staff and volunteers with the tools and resources, such as sensitivity activities, to help staff increase their ability to work with youth of varying abilities in the same club or program.”

Win Super Bowl Viewing Party Host of the Year with our Food Safety Tips

It’s coming. The most popular TV event of the year — Super Bowl Sunday!!! That means the four F’s…Fun, Family, Friends and Food. The pressure is on. You don’t want to be the Super Bowl party host that your guests call — or even worse, post to social media — saying they got foodborne illness. If that happens…Houston, we have a problem!

Some estimates put the number of hours Americans will spend preparing food for Super Bowl parties near 10 million. From the TV setup to the delicious menu, it’s all about having fun, eating and watching the game (and the half time show of course). Start planning your viewing party with our four food safety steps: Clean, Separate, Cook and Chill.

In Texas, Tradition and Innovation are "Continuing Resolutions" between Tribe and NRCS

This year, the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) will continue its resolution to build on its partnerships with Indian Country by supporting sustainably-managed crops and innovative ways to produce crops that are compatible with tribal cultures.

An example of these efforts is the relationship between the Ysleta del Sur Pueblo Tribe, located near El Paso, Texas, and NRCS. Working with NRCS, the Tribe constructed a seasonal high tunnel system at the Pueblo Education Center during a two-day workshop. The system provides an opportunity for Native youth to grow crops and take home fresh produce for healthy meals.