News: : In ‘This Blessed Earth,’ the outdated romance of the family farm   source: Minnesota Public Radio  

The farms and small towns of our parents and grandparents generation are less and less each season. New technology, out-migration, changing geopolitics — they’re all factors contributing to the ebb of the family farm culture. If the topic interests you, “This Blessed Earth” is a new book featured in this MPR article.

Summary by: Josh Wolsky

News: : Optimistic investors pumping $75 million into meatless burgers   source: Quartz  

There are two companies chasing the concept of the meatless burger, and before you dismiss the idea with some picture of a bean patty or veggie burger, the goal is a burger that looks and tastes like real beef, and they’re closer than you realize. It may seem far-fetched or impossible, but the impacts on ranchers will likely be real as a more environmentally-focused food consumer comes of age. […]

Summary by: Josh Wolsky

News: : The Gulf Of Mexico’s Dead Zone Is The Biggest Ever Seen   source: NPR  

When agricultural producers use too much fertilizer, the surplus that isn’t absorbed into the land and plants runs off into the water shed. When it gets to the end of the downstream line, it dumps into the ocean or a lake. In North Dakota’s case, one of those end-of-the-line watershed deposits is the Gulf of Mexico. The environmental damage that’s done is hard to see, particularly from 2,000 miles […]

Summary by: Josh Wolsky

News: : EPA chief to discuss water regulations during visit to state   source: Williston Herald  

Scott Pruitt, the EPA’s top administrator, will be visiting North Dakota next week, and the Waters of the U.S. rule making is expected to be a hot topic of conversation. Between agricultural and energy industries and our cultural disposition toward property rights, environmental regulations and rules have big impacts on North Dakota, and it sounds like those are some of the messages that will be carried to Mr. […]

Summary by: Josh Wolsky

News: : How, and why, some farmers are bringing livestock back to the prairie   source:   

The way people are eating and sourcing their food is changing, and as a result, so are the farms that produce that food. More and more, consumers are attuned to concepts like animal welfare and locally sourcing. That means there’s a growing market for the farms of our grandfathers — the smaller operations with a diverse set of revenue sources, and perhaps, a more environmentally sustainable model.

Summary by: Josh Wolsky

News: : Western wheat crop down by a third or more   source: Bismarck Tribune  

The yields are starting to come in, and it’s what would be expected in a drought year. Numbers vary widely across the state, but in the areas with less rain, the yields per acre are down from the averages of the recent good years. The Bismarck Tribune has the story on the early data. Hopefully, the decrease in supply will drive a price increase in some form that […]

Summary by: Josh Wolsky

Learn, News: : 10 Farming Myths to Think About on Your Next Grocery Run   source: Science Alert  

It’s true, here in North Dakota we’re closer to our food production here than most parts of the country, but that doesn’t mean some misperceptions about dinner gets from the farm to the table aren’t out there. This quick article from Science Alerts calls out the common myths about modern agriculture and food production and replaces them with the current best information.

Summary by: Josh Wolsky

News: : The amount of US land used to grow wheat is at the lowest in almost a century   source:   

Wheat markets are in flux right now, and the price is on the rise. A late season snowstorm in Kansas, drought in North Dakota are all factors, but so too is the fact that there were fewer wheat acres planted this year than at any point since the government began tracking the information in 1919. Quartz has the story on the market realities facing one of the area’s […]

Summary by: Josh Wolsky

News: : Burgum declares statewide fire, drought emergency   source: Bismarck Tribune  

Governor Burgum declared a statewide drought emergency; the action allows the National Guard to be activated if necessary. “These conditions present a serious threat to the health and safety of local area citizens and their personal property,” Burgum said in a statement. “Significant manpower and equipment will be required for response and recovery operations.”

Summary by: Josh Wolsky

News: : Scientific American Labels Precision Farming as a Technology to Watch   source: Scientific American  

We all gotta eat, the world’s population keeps on growing. And we don’t seem to be growing a lot of new land, so we’re going to have to feed the growing population with the food production areas already in use. And toward that end, precision farming is a concept that has a high ceiling. Companies that can deliver higher efficiency and yields through technology are thought to have […]

Summary by: Josh Wolsky

News: : A new player in the meat market… plants   source: Quartz  

North Dakota is beef country; we run cattle and order steak. But outside of North Dakota in food labs and corporate boardrooms, there’s been a long fought effort to produce beef that doesn’t come from cows. They’re getting closer. Read the article on Quartz about a new plant-based meat substitute that earned a heady praise from nationwide grocery chain.

Summary by: Josh Wolsky

News: : Health Department warns of cyanotoxin in North Dakota waters, animal deaths reported   source: Minot Daily News  

The hotter-than-usual weather combined with little rain has sped up mother nature’s clock when it comes to creating ripe conditions for blue-green algae development. The blue-green algae release cyanotoxins into water sources that can be fatal if ingested. Several cattle deaths have already been reported. Kim Fundingsland with the Minot Daily News has the story.

Summary by: Josh Wolsky