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Paul Greenberg on the Gulf of Mexico Dead Zone–and How to Fix it.

In the latest Food & Environment Reporting Network report, in partnership with The American Prospect, reporter Paul Greenberg, author of the New York Times bestseller Four Fish, tells the story of how the “dead zone” in the Gulf of Mexico is the  result of decades-long U.S. agricultural practices and investigates some of the promising solutions […]

Obama Administration Allows Unrestricted Planting of GMO Alfalfa. Bye-Bye Organic Milk and Beef

On Thursday, the Obama administration showed whose side it is on in the battle between proponents of sustainable, organic agriculture and the big businesses that profit from conventional, chemical agriculture. Big Ag won. It wasn’t even close. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that the United State Department of Agriculture (USDA) had approved the unrestricted planting […]

Cloned Steer Wins Iowa State 4-H Competition–Is that Fair? USDA Thumbs Nose at Federal Judge and Allows GMO Beets to be Planted

  All’s Fair: Cloned Cow Wins Iowa 4-H Competition One of my favorite events at our rural county’s annual agricultural fair is when the youthful 4-H club members show their prized cattle. Well-scrubbed teenagers clad in white shoes, white pants, and white shirts proudly lead their well-groomed bovines into the arena where they are judged […]

Newsbites:Big Ag and the Obama Administration: A Who’s Who; Wheat Rust Could Cause Widespread Famine; Finally, the FDA Comes out Against Needless Antibiotic Use in Livestock; Government Body Chooses Wrong Side in the Organic/Conventional Debate

Big Ag’s Big Pal in the Oval Office The World’s Bread Basket in Danger of Rusting Away FDA Takes a Anti-Antibiotic Stance—Finally Federal Dietary Guidelines: Organic no Better than Conventional           Big Ag’s Big Pal in the Oval Office Even as a journalist who is supposed to follow matters related to […]

Newsbites: FDA Ready to Approve GMO Supersalmon; Remember Acid Rain? It’s Back and Worse than Ever Thanks to Big Ag; Recession Ends for Organic Dairy Farmers

●One More Reason to Avoid Farmed Salmon ●Acid Rain Redux ● Land of Milk and Money   One More Reason to Avoid Farmed Salmon Prince Edward Island bills itself as a bucolic haven of pristine beaches, white clapboard farmhouses, and quaint fishing villages. But the province is also home to one of the scariest places […]

Newsbites: Why Does John McCain Hate Small Farmers So Much? Tuna Strike Back at Sushi Lovers. The Real Takeaway Message from the Latest E. coli Outbreak Isn’t What You Think.

Ain’t easy keeping track of all this government largesse. Three prominent Republican United States senators sent a letter to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack recently condemning the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) “Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food” program, introduced last fall to help strengthen local food systems. John McCain (R-AZ), Saxby Chambliss (R-GA), and […]

White House Whitewash: Can the Agribusiness Lobby Kill Small, Organic Dairy Farmers?

   On some bureaucrat’s desk in President Obama’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB), sits a document that has the power to either destroy the nation’s 1,800 family-operated organic dairy farms or come to their rescue. In the early 2000s, virtually all of the nation’s organic dairy farmers—not to mention the millions of consumers willing […]