Wisconsin barn

This Thanksgiving, consider the wellbeing of family farmers 

BY: - November 22, 2023

On Thanksgiving, families across America are gathering around tables to enjoy the season’s bounty. Yet, behind the scenes, a complex web of challenges threatens the agricultural foundation of this tradition. The recent one-year extension of the 2018 Farm Bill by Congress has brought temporary relief, but the call for a new, comprehensive five-year farm bill […]

now falls March 30, 2009 in Fargo, North Dakota. Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images.

Federal report forecasts the Midwest’s climate future

BY: - November 20, 2023

More ticks. More mosquitos. Less snowmobiling and ice fishing. Those are just a few of the climate impacts facing Midwestern states in the coming decades, according to the just-released Fifth National Climate Assessment. The massive, congressionally-mandated report is released roughly every five years in an attempt to track how climate change is affecting the United […]

Biden launches ‘Investing in Rural America’ push with Cabinet officials

BY: - November 1, 2023

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden and administration officials are kicking off an “Investing in Rural America” event series, starting with a visit to a Minnesota farm Wednesday to announce nearly $5 billion for conservation, economic development and “climate smart” agriculture. Biden, who is running for reelection in 2024, has been highlighting what the administration calls […]

Wisconsin lawmakers introduce bill to protect one of the four main food groups — maple syrup

BY: - October 10, 2023

Wisconsin Sen. Kelda Roys (D-Madison) loves real maple syrup so much that she’s kept a bottle in her purse so she’s never out to breakfast and forced to put artificial syrup on her pancakes.  Last week, due to her love of maple syrup nearly as intense as Buddy, the main character in the movie Elf, […]

organic farm

As consumers flock to organic foods, lawmakers urge more federal grants for farmers

BY: - October 9, 2023

WASHINGTON — U.S. lawmakers are pushing a bill that would boost support for organic farmers amid rising demand for their products. U.S. Sens. Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin and Angus King of Maine in the Senate, alongside U.S. Reps. Chellie Pingree of Maine and Annie Kuster of New Hampshire in the House, introduced the Organic Market […]

Rows of soybean plants grow in the fields at Seidenstricker Farms, owned by Robert and Cathy Seidenstricker, in De Valls Bluff, Arkansas, on June 25, 2019. (USDA photo by Lance Cheung)

Farm bill stalled amid U.S. House speaker battle, delay of spending bills

BY: - October 9, 2023

WASHINGTON —  As Congress faces another pressing deadline to fund the government and the U.S. House grinds to a halt without a speaker, the reauthorization of the nation’s agriculture and hunger programs has taken a back seat. But lawmakers tasked with shepherding the new version maintain their progress is “in good shape.” The previous farm […]

Republican lawmakers vote to deny confirmation for four Evers appointees to DNR board

BY: - September 28, 2023

This story has been updated with comments from Gov. Tony Evers and Sen. Mark Spreitzer.  The Wisconsin Senate Committee on Financial Institutions and Sporting Heritage voted on Thursday to recommend denying the confirmation of four nominees of Gov. Tony Evers to the state Natural Resources Board (NRB).  The three Republicans on the committee voted against […]

The farm bill is on the verge of expiring. Congress is months away from a new version.

BY: - September 27, 2023

WASHINGTON — As the deadline for Congress to pass a new farm bill looms this weekend, staff members of the House and Senate Agriculture committees say it will be months — if not longer — until they reach agreement on a new bill. Lawmakers must rewrite the sweeping farm bill every five years to set […]

Red barn, rural landscape, silos, farm field

What’s missing from discussion of the Farm Bill

BY: - August 23, 2023

The Farm Bill, an omnibus five year bill dealing with farm and food programs, ultimately affects everyone in Wisconsin. Whether you farm, eat, depend on food assistance programs, or just like to breathe clean air or have access to clean water, the Farm Bill affects you. Republican Congressman Derrick Van Orden hosted a Farm Bill […]

More than two dozen Wisconsin dog breeders have been cited by feds this year

BY: - August 22, 2023

Wisconsin ranks No. 4 for the number of dog breeders in the state cited by the U.S. Department of Agriculture for violations of health and safety rules so far this year, according to reports compiled by Bailing Out Benji, an Iowa-based animal welfare organization.  The reports cover the first six months of 2023. With 28 […]

A farmer harvests corn near Slater, Iowa on Oct. 17, 2020. (Perry Beeman/Iowa Capital Dispatch)

Farm bill timeline in flux as a messy September for Congress nears

BY: - August 16, 2023

WASHINGTON — The roundtables, listening sessions and appearances at farm shows have largely wrapped up and lawmakers tasked with reauthorizing the nation’s agriculture and nutrition programs are comparing notes and beginning to draft the massive, multi-year farm bill. The 2018 version expires Sept. 30, just as many urgent priorities compete for floor time in Congress […]

USDA’s climate grants for farms and forests run into Republican buzzsaw

BY: - August 10, 2023

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration is spending more than $3 billion to cultivate more American farmers and forest landowners as partners to mitigate climate change — even while some Republicans on Capitol Hill try to stop the program entirely. The administration launched a new farm program, Partnerships for Climate Smart Commodities, this year. It is […]