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A Deeper Look into the USDA.gov Website Redesign

We hope you are finding it easier to get the information you need on USDA.gov following the launch of our site redesign in March. We’ve already welcomed over 1 million visitors to the new site and we are pleased with the positive feedback we’ve received thus far.

Our redesign makes it easier for you to get the news you care about quickly and get on with your busy life. Now, you can explore “USDA in Action,” an area designed to quickly share what’s happening across the department. And another friendly feature is being able to sign up for email updates with the click of a button from any page on the site. It’s all part of our strategic efforts to improve upon digital communications across USDA, strengthen collaboration with all of our USDA agencies, and expand our digital capabilities.

Caring for the Land and Serving People through Agroforestry

People become interested in agroforestry for a wide range of reasons including improving water quality, enhancing wildlife habitat, reducing soil erosion, and increasing crop and livestock production.

Agroforestry, the intentional combination of trees with crops or livestock, is designed to support landowners’ conservation and production goals. Through U.S. Forest Service, state agency, and other technical assistance providers who work with landowners, the National Agroforestry Center works with partners to care for the land and serve people.

The Benefits of Studying a Domestic Goat with an Interesting History

In much of the developing world, goats are essential for survival and are highly valued for their meat, milk and hides. So it should come as no surprise that Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists and academic and industry colleagues, working with DNA from a domestic goat, used new technologies to develop a vastly improved and relatively inexpensive reference goat genome. This information will serve as a kind of instruction manual for scientists showing them how to use the same technologies to lower the cost of developing improved livestock genomes.

Neither Rain nor Sleet nor Snow Stops Wildlife Disease Biologists from Collecting Samples

On a cold and blustery day, APHIS wildlife disease biologist Jared Hedelius sits in his truck by the Bighorn River in Montana and waits. Although the temperatures outside are well below freezing, the mallards on the river are busy searching for food, oblivious to Jared’s swim-in live trap just a few feet from the shoreline. Soon, enough ducks have entered the trap and Jared leaves his warm truck and heads to the water. He sets up his equipment and begins collecting samples.

Spring Food Fun for Kids with MyPlate’s Food Groups

Spring is here! Whether you’re looking for a fun activity to do with kids while they’re home for Spring Break or hunting for afterschool activities for kiddos, MyPlate has you covered. Get kids excited about healthy eating with this easy kid-friendly activity that incorporates all five of the MyPlate food groups -- Fruits, Vegetables, Protein Foods, Dairy, and Grains!

Healthy Culverts Make for Healthy Drinking Water

Culverts provide an abundance of benefits to us every day. They allow us to pass over water, and for fish and wildlife to pass beneath us. And they allow us to go about our daily lives and ideally, for fish and wildlife to do the same. But when they’re badly designed, the results can be disastrous for people, communities, and the environment.

'Turnip the Beet' Recognizes High Quality Summer Meals

When thinking of summer meal programs, what comes to mind? Hot lunches and fresh produce bars? Themed menus made with fresh, local foods? Taste tests and cooking lessons? Summer meal sponsors nationwide are working hard to make sure these practices are the new norms, and the positive movement is spreading.

When Something Strange Happens to Your Food - Who You Gonna Call?

It’s Friday morning and you get out of bed, ready for another day at work, and you are excited that the pot roast you put in your slow cooker the night before is hot and ready to pack for lunch. You run into the kitchen and notice the light on the slow cooker is out. The flashing 12:00 on the microwave tells you there was a brief power outage overnight. But when did the power go out? The food looks like it cooked all the way and it is still a little warm, can you eat it? Will you get sick?

California Community Hosts Second Annual MyPlate-Inspired Fun Run

MyPlate reminds and empowers Americans to make healthy choices that work for them. One California elementary school got creative with MyPlate, hosting a fun and educational event that emphasized the importance of healthy eating and being active. Learn more about how this highly successful activity impacted its community in the guest post below, written by organizers of the event: