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Know the Lei of the Land: APHIS Plant Health Safeguarding Specialists’ Work in Hawaii

Aloha! I am a Plant Health Safeguarding Specialist based in Hawaii, where my colleagues and I help protect agricultural crops and natural resources on the U.S. mainland from plant pests like exotic fruit flies, Asian citrus psyllid and the coconut rhinoceros beetle. The Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service’s multi-faceted predeparture inspection program supports the movement of travelers, baggage, cargo and mail leaving the Hawaiian Islands, while working to stop the movement of invasive pests.

Counting Those that ‘Run for the Roses’

The horse racing community and most Kentuckians may be champing at the bit to hear the pounding of the hooves the first Saturday in May, but here at the National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), we’re focusing on counting all those horses and measuring the value of equine production and sales.

USDA Announcement of CACFP Training Grants Kicks Off FNCS Visits to Farm to School Program and WIC Clinic in San Antonio

Last week, USDA Acting Deputy Under Secretary for Food, Nutrition and Consumer Services (FNCS), Brandon Lipps, made a whirlwind trip to San Antonio, Texas, to serve as the keynote speaker at the National Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) National Child Nutrition Conference and visit local sites operating FNCS programs. The highlight of his conference remarks was announcing the availability of $5.4 million in training grants to help child and adult care providers deliver first-class meal service.

If She Can See It, She Can Be It: Girl Scouts Learn STEM at USDA

“It felt a little buzzy,” said Lily Meritt, 7, a Daisy Girl Scout from Montgomery County, Maryland. She watched hungry mosquitoes through a plexiglass container as a USDA research scientist talked about pests that love to bug people. Lily and other D.C.-area Girl Scouts visited USDA headquarters to meet women scientists, learn about their work, and discover career possibilities in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).

Technology-Based Resources Support School Nutrition Programs, Enhance Customer Service to States

In today’s school cafeterias, program operators work in fast-paced environments requiring quick and convenient access to resources to properly feed our nation’s children and effectively manage their programs. To meet this crucial need, USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) has released several exciting technology-based resources and tools to help them do just that.

Protecting Agriculture on the Internet – One Click, One Post, One Sale at a Time

While we are raising awareness about invasive pests during Invasive Plant Pest and Disease Awareness Month, I wanted to share a bit about what I do every day to protect agriculture. When you picture someone on the front lines of stopping invasive pests, you probably picture someone outside – in a field or a tree. But I fight invasive pests from a completely different location – my computer.

Goodwill’s SNAP E&T Initiatives Help Georgians Return to Work

Just a few weeks ago, I had an opportunity to visit the Goodwill of North Georgia Career Center in Decatur, Ga., to see firsthand how they help people in need in their community. The Career Center plays an important role in the lives of many hardworking men and women as home to several SNAP Employment & Training Programs (SNAP E&T) designed to help Georgians acquire the skills needed to find jobs that will enable them to support themselves and their families.

‘Turnip the Beet’ Recognizes High-Quality Summer Meals for our Nation’s Kids

There are millions of America’s youth who do not have access to nutritious meals when school is not in session. Offering nutritious meals to our nation’s children and teens that are appetizing, appealing and wholesome is a responsibility USDA takes very seriously.

It’s a Small World After All

The United States Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue has proclaimed April 2018 as Invasive Plant Pest and Disease Awareness Month. The goal of IPPDAM is to: increase public awareness of invasive species; provide tips to prevent their spread; and, encourage residents to report signs of them. Today we highlight USDA’s Heather Coady. Ms. Coady, and Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) employees like her, assist other countries in their pest control efforts by working to stop pests at the source.