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Whether Donating or Receiving Food this Thanksgiving, Everyone Can be Thankful for Food Safety

Thanksgiving is a time when many people give back, including volunteering to prepare holiday meals or donating food to those who are less fortunate. This is also a time when people are handling and receiving food in unfamiliar settings. Improper food handling has led to past foodborne illness outbreaks during the holiday season. Those handling food in a different kitchen or preparing food in a new way must be even more aware of basic food safety practices to prevent illness outbreaks.

Why Reconnecting Our Rural Communities Matters

You may be reading this blog entry from your desk workstation, or perhaps a laptop in a coffee shop. You might even be perusing this on your smartphone. It’s a common, everyday occurrence that can easily be taken for granted. Unfortunately, in many parts of rural South Carolina – it’s not only a luxury to have broadband internet access, it’s not even possible!

A Consequence of Our Citizenship

It can be challenging for veterans to find their voice this time of year. That’s understandable. Within an extraordinary community who once wore, or continues to wear the uniform of our country, and their families who stand strong at home, Veterans Day opens a personal window that profoundly touches lives.

A 60-Foot Christmas Gift is on its Way to Washington, D.C.

At about 9 a.m. MST, in a remote section of the in New Mexico, workers gently loaded a massive 60-foot blue spruce onto a very long trailer bed — the first stage of the tree’s 2,000-mile journey to Washington, D.C. The will stop in more than 25 communities as it makes its way across the country before arriving on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol Building on Monday, Nov. 25.

USDA Southeast Climate Hub Workshop Discusses Salinization Impacts: What is Known and What is Not Known to Address Them

Trees and crops are experiencing stress, productivity loss and even death in coastal areas due to saltwater intrusion and salinization. For example, Somerset County, Maryland has been losing farmland to salt marsh migration at a rate of 100 acres per year over the last 10 years, and that amount is expected to increase significantly in the next few decades.

A High-Speed Boost for Rural Tennessee

If you’ve ever had to travel to get access to the internet – whether to a library or a restaurant in a nearby town, or any other community resource that has that critical connection to the world of information – you understand the excitement we have here in Tennessee as the first state to announce a project funded through USDA’s ReConnect rural broadband infrastructure program.

Idaho’s Bovine Bonus

According to the 2017 Census of Agriculture conducted by USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service, Idaho had an inventory of more than 2.4 million head of cattle and calves in December 2017, ranking 12th among all states. In comparison, the U.S. Census Bureau estimated Idaho’s population to be around 1.7 million in 2017, which means there were over 700,000 more cattle than people in Idaho that year.

Partnering to Deliver Drought Information through USDA Service Centers: A New Fact Sheet Outlines Drought-Related Recovery Programs

When dealing with drought, producers can feel overwhelmed and unsure of where to get help to recover from their losses, mitigate risk, and/or prepare for future events. To support the agricultural community in locating the information they need, USDA in partnership with the National Drought Mitigation Center (NDMC) at the University of Nebraska, developed a (PDF, 1 MB) with information on the (USDM) and drought related programs that rely on its use.

Agriculture in the Beehive State

According to the 2017 Census of Agriculture, Utah had more than 18,400 farms encompassing more than 10.8 million acres. This is an increase of 2 percent in the number of farms and a decrease of 1 percent in total acres compared to the 2012 Census of Agriculture. Just under 80 percent of Utah’s farmland is permanent pasture and rangeland –– but a significant amount is cropland, of which most is irrigated. The total value of agricultural sales is $1.84 billion, of which 31 percent are from crop sales and 69 percent are from livestock and their products!

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