farmers

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He Was Sick of a Sucky 2020. His Remedy: 2M Sunflowers

Wis. farmer Scott Thompson has planted upward of 2M 'blooms of sunshine' to make people happy

(Newser) - Strawberries, raspberries, and pumpkins are what you'd find growing on Scott Thompson's Wisconsin farm in a normal summer and fall. But 2020 is definitely anything but normal, and this year, neither are the Bristol farmer's fields. When the pandemic forced everything to start shutting down in March,...

Another Postal Service Issue: Mail-Order Chicks, Dead

Thousands aren't surviving usual shipments to Maine farmers

(Newser) - When Postmaster General Louis DeJoy testifies before Congress Friday and Monday, he'll surely get lots of questions about how new policies might affect mail-in voting. But he might also get questions about a new and grisly problem with mail-order chicks. The Portland Press Herald reports that thousands of chicks...

Experts Paint Eyes on Cow Butts—and It Works

Researchers find a low-cost way to save cattle in Botswana

(Newser) - Want to save cattle from predatory attacks? First, paint eyeballs on their butts. Then see what happens. That's pretty much the gist of a new study out of Botswana—and it worked, Happy Mag reports. Researchers at the University of South Wales painted the eyes on cow butts to...

Farmer's Killing Was 'Incomprehensible'—Until Now

Elmer Yuill was murdered on his farm back in 1991. Now, a suspect emerges

(Newser) - Elmer Yuill's killing made no sense at all. The gentle farmer liked doting on his younger sisters and kept his barnyard so clean that drivers pulled over for photos. Yet early one morning in 1991, the 77-year-old was found dead, two bullets in the back—execution style—on that...

The Chickens Churned Out Eggs. Then Came the Gas

Egg farmer Kerry Mergen says 61K chickens were euthanized due to drop in demand due to virus

(Newser) - A Minnesota contract egg farmer says his livelihood has been erased along with 61,000 chickens owing to a drop in demand triggered by the coronavirus pandemic. Kerry Mergen and his wife, Barb, produced 4,500 dozen eggs per day, which were turned into fluid egg and sent to food...

Feds Pull Crop Tour Staff After Threat From Farmer

'The safety of our employees is our top priority'

(Newser) - Trouble in the heartland for the Trump administration? The Department of Agriculture says it pulled all of its staff from a tour of corn and soybean fields in the Midwest after a credible threat was made against an employee. Sources tell Reuters that the threat was made in a phone...

Protected Birds Are Eating Cows Alive

Black vultures can peck a calf to death in minutes, starting at the eyes

(Newser) - Black vultures are eating livestock alive, and there's little farmers can do about it unless they secure a federal permit to kill the protected birds, whose numbers have ballooned over the last two decades. Kentucky herdsman Derek Lawson says he came upon six black vultures pecking a calf to...

Farmers Drown Their Sorrows in Beer and Fried Chicken

Illinois farmers gather for a 'Prevent Plant Party'

(Newser) - Illinois farmers gathered to tell their tales of woe Thursday at—of all places—The Happy Spot. With heavy rains and record floods forcing them to leave millions of acres unseeded, corn farmers gathered with sellers of equipment, chemicals, and seed at the Deer Grove restaurant to swap stories over...

PepsiCo's Warning to Farmers: 'Join Us or Grow Other Potatoes'

Company wants 4 small farmers in India to stop growing tuber it uses in Lay's potato chips

(Newser) - Four farmers in India only boast a few acres each, but a special potato they're growing has one of the world's biggest food and beverage conglomerates after them. PepsiCo's Indian subsidiary filed suits against the small group of farmers in early April, accusing them of planting a...

Bollywood Star Pays Debts of 1.4K Farmers

They lack 'basic necessities,' says Amitabh Bachchan

(Newser) - Amitabh Bachchan, one of the highest paid actors in Bollywood, briefly mentioned his desire to help farmers after one appeared as a contestant on the Indian version of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, which he hosts. And boy, did he follow through. The actor, who's appeared in some...

US to Start Paying Farmers $4.7B for Trade War Losses

Soybean growers will get the most relief

(Newser) - Starting next week, farmers who have taken a financial hit because of trade disputes between the US and other countries can apply for government assistance. The White House will dole out $4.7 billion in direct aid to help make up for their reduced profits, reports Bloomberg . Most of that,...

Trump to Give Farmers Aid, but Farmers Aren't Thrilled

'They want trade, not aid,' says lawmaker of $12B in emergency relief amid tariff disputes

(Newser) - President Trump showed off a new campaign hat on Monday—it's green with yellow letters, reminiscent of the John Deere logo, and it reads "Make Our Farmers Great Again," notes Politico . (See Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue sporting one here .) The message is a calculated one as...

Cops Hit Tour de France Riders With Tear Gas

Police were stopping a farmers' protest, but the spray inadvertently affected bicyclists

(Newser) - Because Tour de France bicyclists needed another physical challenge: Cops accidentally hit some of them with tear gas on Tuesday. It happened as officers were breaking up a farmers' protest that interrupted the 16th stage, reports Australia's ABC . The farmers, upset at slashed government funding, had blocked the road...

They Grow Our Food, and They're Killing Themselves

The CDC says those in the agricultural industry have the highest suicide rate

(Newser) - On the day in May 2011 that Matt Peters took his own life, he spoke on the phone with Dr. Mike Rosmann. Rosmann, himself an Iowa farmer, is also a psychologist who doubles as "one of the nation’s leading farmer behavioral health experts," writes Debbie Weingarten for...

Tiny Invader Threatens Food Staple in Africa

Fall armyworm is wiping out maize crops

(Newser) - Still reeling from a severe drought, Zimbabwe is now on the brink of going hungry as an invasive pest wreaks havoc on the staple crop maize. The UN Food and Agriculture Organization reports that seven of the country's eight provinces have been hit by the fall armyworm, and as...

Craft Breweries Are Finding Specialty Hops All Tapped Out

In spite of rapid growth in supply, demand is causing headaches

(Newser) - Henry VIII once called hops a "wicked and pernicious weed," but they're crucial to the production of most beers, especially when it comes to "hoppy" India Pale Ales, or IPAs. In fact, more than 4,000 brewers are battling for less than a dozen popular hop...

Got Milk? Yep, Way Too Much of It

US dairy farmers have dumped 43M gallons in just the first 8 months of 2016

(Newser) - There's way too much cheese in America, so it's logical there's also too much of the milk used to make it. Now US dairy farmers are remedying this by dumping their excess, to the tune of more than 43 million gallons in just the first eight months...

California Is Going After Its Farting Cows

It's all part of Gov. Jerry Brown's plan to fight climate change

(Newser) - California Gov. Jerry Brown kept up his assault on climate change Monday, pushing through a law meant to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions from dairy farms and landfills. "You know, when Noah wanted to build his ark, most of the people laughed at him?" Brown said, per the Sacramento Bee , adding...

This California Couple Uses Mind-Boggling Amount of Water

Megafarmers Lynda and Stewart Resnick have built a multi-billion dollar empire

(Newser) - While you may not be familiar with California power couple and megafarmers Lynda and Stewart Resnick, it's highly likely you've heard of some of the things they own. There's flower delivery service Teleflora; Fiji Water; Pom Wonderful juices; Halos mandarin oranges; groves upon groves of navels, grapefruits,...

Brewers Are Scrambling to Get Pumpkin for Fall Beers

Blame it on the weather

(Newser) - No, the predicted Great Pumpkin Shortage of 2015 didn't actually live up to its name, as Fortune reported last November. But that's in part because the companies that can pumpkins didn't hold onto reserves for the following year's crop—that would, of course, be this year'...

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