Matt McKenna explains if USDA were able to issue government-backed debentures to RBICs, it would facilitate the flow of private capital to rural businesses serving communities in all 50 states, thereby generating employment opportunities and stimulating innovation and other critical economic development.
Farmers will get some welcome relief starting next month from the market impact of the coronavirus, but it will take a second round of payments to keep many in the black this year, and producers may face similar problems into next year.
China is buying a lot more U.S. ag commodities and tearing down major import restrictions — just as it promised in the “phase one” trade deal — but the successes of the pact are being drowned out by growing animosity on both sides of the Pacific.
The desert locust, generally considered one of the most devastating pests in the world to agriculture, has been hitting farmers hard in the Horn of Africa as well as the Arabian Peninsula for six months, devouring crops and pasture. With COVID-19, the situation has gone from bad to worse.
COVID-19 brought a wave of new economic challenges that producers are still working through. But for beginning farmers, the pandemic has added a new level of stress that's making it that much harder to get started in agriculture, echoing the psychological toll of the 1980s.
Tammy Anderson-Wise, CEO of the Dairy Council of California, explains the program they are launching to help families find school meal service sites as well as providing information to locate nearby food banks and free online nutrition resources to support distance learning.
Packing plants shuttered by the COVID-19 pandemic are mostly up and running once again, which is placing a new focus on testing and the availability of personal protective equipment to keep their doors open.