Agriculture economics and rural communities

New Tool Helps Livestock Farmers Price for Profit

Cornell Meat Price & Yield Calculator unveils new features to support livestock farmers. The material noted in this blog is based upon work supported by USDA/NIFA under award number 2015-49200-24225.

Making a Difference in Vermont with Women Farmers

Women farmers and ranchers are one of the fastest growing groups in agriculture, making up 30 percent of all farm operators. However, women-operated farms tend to be smaller, and only 10 percent have annual sales over $50,000.

Exporting Used Textiles Helps Global and Local Economies

Donating used clothing to charities obviously helps clothe and employ fellow Americans, but other benefits fly below the radar: exporting worn textiles provides income to low- and middle-income foreign countries, and also helps the environment. That win-win-win situation gives new meaning to the phrase, “giving the shirt off your back.”

The Hunt for Genetically Engineered Organisms

Similar to a Star Trek Tricorder device, physicists and biologists at the University of Notre Dame, Rice University, and the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies in New York have teamed up to develop a field-ready device to detect the genetic or protein signature of genetically engineered (GE) organisms in the environment.

Saving Ranchers Money

Glenn Shewmaker, professor at the University of Idaho, wants to help ranchers save money. According to Shewmaker, livestock producers who implement managed grazing practices could see increased carrying capacity of pastures, extended grazing seasons, and reduced winter feed costs.

AgrAbility Helps Ag Workers with Disabilities Succeed

Farmers, ranchers, and other agricultural workers have one of the most dangerous occupations in America, suffering more fatal work injuries each year than most other professions. There were 570 fatalities in 2015 and even more debilitating injuries.

Determined to Farm

AgrAbility at work. Three generations of the Beckman family have farmed the fields of northeastern Nebraska. However, that legacy almost ended for Eric Beckman in May 2007 when he rolled his pickup truck. The trauma he sustained included a high level spinal cord injury that left him paralyzed from the chest down.

4D innovation in Georgia fields

Traditionally, crop monitoring has been done manually, which is very labor and cost intensive. More recent precision agricultural tools such as satellites and unmanned aerial and ground vehicles have reduced costs, but the amount of useful information that can be gathered from 2D images and 3D reconstructions is limited. Thanks to a new research collaboration by the Georgia Institute of Technology, University of Georgia, and Georgia Tech Research Institute, farmers may soon have a 4D crop monitoring system at their fingertips.

Small Town 4-H’er Reaches for the Stars

Many kids gaze up into the night’s sky and dream of touching the stars. Peggy Whitson, NASA astronaut and commander of the International Space Station, turned that dream into reality.

NIFA Programs Salute and Assist Veterans and their Families

Whether protecting our nation and its highest ideals with military service or ensuring a safe, abundant, and nutritious food supply as veterans, we are grateful for their willingness to serve.