Harvest Public Media

Harvest Public Media
5:00 am
Fri December 19, 2014

Midwest Recruiting California Dairies To Pump Up Rural Economy

Many California diaries are struggling through drought and feeling crowded by urbanization. Midwestern states are hoping to capitalize by offering abundant water, feed, and open spaces.
Grant Gerlock Harvest Public Media

As drought, feed costs, and urban development wear on West Coast milk producers, states like Nebraska, Kansas and Iowa are pitching themselves as a dairy heaven. Even in California, the nation’s No. 1 dairy state, many dairy farmers are listening.

For the Midwest, an influx of dairies isn’t just about milk. It’s about pumping dollars into the rural economy.

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Harvest Public Media
12:42 pm
Thu December 18, 2014

California Dairies Look To Midwest’s Greener Pastures

Dairy farmer Brian Azevedo plans to sell his dairy in Merced, Calif., and move to South Dakota.
Ezra David Romero Harvest Public Media

California is branded as the state with happy cows, but increasingly, not necessarily happy dairy owners. For many of them in the nation’s No. 1 dairy state it’s getting tougher to make a living, that’s why some are some selling their cattle and heading to the Midwest.

A full quarter of California dairies have been shuttered since 2007, according to Michael Marsh, CEO of Western United Dairymen.

“They’ve just closed their doors and they’ve decided to make their investment in other states,” Marsh said.

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Harvest Public Media
5:42 pm
Thu December 11, 2014

Grain glut clogs railways, rivers, roads

An MFA Agriservices worker monitors the soybean chute as the barge fills up on the Missouri River in Glasgow, Mo.
Kristofor Husted Harvest Public Media/KBIA

Originally published on Tue December 16, 2014 4:02 pm

 

For the Midwest’s biggest crops, this harvest season was a big one. With winter setting in, the race is on for farmers to ship out their harvest so it’s not left out to spoil. But the giant harvest and a lack of available rail cars have created a traffic jam on the rails and the highways.

Usually, famers store their harvest in silos and grain bins, but this year, farmers brought in so much, there’s just no room.  Farmers in Missouri, Indiana, Illinois and South Dakota are all being hit particularly hard by the storage shortage.

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Harvest Public Media
9:57 am
Thu December 4, 2014

Borrowing Tech Sector Ideas To Give Local Food More Heft

Getting food from a farmers field to a market or a restaurant can be tough. Behind the scenes parts of the supply chain like distribution and processing are often forgotten.
Natalie Maynor Flickr

More cities want to take eating local food from just a hip trend to an economic generator, but as in many grassroots movements, there can be some growing pains along the way. Northern Colorado advocates are trying a new model to spur growth and they’re borrowing ideas from the tech sector.

It’s called a food cluster and it’s based in Fort Collins, Colo.

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Harvest Public Media
2:54 pm
Tue November 25, 2014

For Ranchers, A Grassland Rush

Cattle take a drink from a tank filled by a windmill. Rancher Dave Wright was hoping to buy part of a neighboring ranch to expand his herd, but it sold for extreme prices.
Grant Gerlock Harvest Public Media

After getting pummeled by drought and low cattle prices, many ranchers are across the Midwest are eager to grow their herds. As they do, grass is turning into a hot commodity.

The national beef herd is down to the size it was in 1951. Shoppers know that beef is more expensive, which has people switching to chicken and pork. To raise more cattle and perhaps bring down meat prices, ranchers need more pasture. The trouble for many ranchers is grass has grown expensive.

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