corn field

A battle brews in rural Wisconsin over factory farms

From AG Insider, November 19, 2019. A community divided. A local official accused of self-dealing. A top political appointee ousted from his job. In Wisconsin, a state where the footprint of agribusiness is growing, the question of how to regulate factory farms is a pressing topic from the town hall to the statehouse. The issue made […]

female farmer with hay and baler

Farm intentionally with passion

From Agri-View, November 4, 2019. ATHENS, Wis. – In the latest Census of Agriculture, the average American farmer was white, male and pushing 60. Consolidation continues as small- to mid-sized farms shrink in number while large-scale operations grow even larger. Another trend is the increase in female farmers, including more women at the helm of […]

bee on flower

Planting Native Prairie Could Be a Secret Weapon for Farmers

From Civil Eat, October 15, 2019. In Iowa, researchers and farmers are discovering that planting strips of native prairie amidst farmland benefits soil, water, biodiversity, and more. When farmer Gary Guthrie describes recent changes to his farm, his eyes light up. After adding native prairie to his central Iowa operation, he remembers hearing the hum […]

Butterfly on milkweed flower

Insect ‘apocalypse’ in U.S. driven by 50x increase in toxic pesticides

From National Geographic, August 6, 2019. Bees, butterflies, and other insects are under attack by the very plants they feed on as U.S. agriculture continues to use chemicals known to kill. America’s agricultural landscape is now 48 times more toxic to honeybees, and likely other insects, than it was 25 years ago, almost entirely due […]

cows crowed in building

Burnett County passes 1-year moratorium on large-scale farms

From the Wisconsin State Farmer, August 6, 2019. The Burnett County Board has passed a one-year moratorium on large-scale farms with 1,000 or more animal units. The move comes after Cumberland, LLC announced plans to build a $20 million farm for up to 26,000 hogs in the town of Trade Lake earlier this year. Read the article.

Raw broccoli


From REAP, July 16, 2019. After two years of conversations and planning with local farmers, institutions and stakeholders, REAP’s answer to getting more fresh, local produce into institutions that feed and care for all residents is off the ground. On Monday, July 15, six employees arrived at the Madison College culinary arts kitchen for their […]

bee on flower

Monoculture farming is not good for bees: Study

From Environmental Health News, July 11, 2019. Farmers around the world are increasingly relying on pollinators—but not providing the crop diversity bees and other insects need to thrive As agriculture has expanded over the last few decades, global dependence on pollinator insects has increased. But crop diversity hasn’t increased nearly as much – and this […]

glass of milk being poured

Study finds residue of pesticides, antibiotics and growth hormone in non-organic milk

From USA Today, June 26, 2019. Results from a recent study examining what’s in organic versus conventional milk show that the majority of samples of conventional, non-organic milk tested positive for certain low, chronic levels of pesticides, illegal antibiotics and growth hormones. The organic samples tested at either much lower or non-existent rates in comparison. Read the article.

A sheep looking at the camera

Solar operations can benefit from grazing sheep

From The Country Today, May 16, 2019. In upstate New York, Lexie Hain and Lewis Fox are growing an interesting business, capitalizing on the state’s push for the use of renewable energies. Hain and Fox are partners in Agrivoltaic Solutions LLC, a group of small to mid-size sheep farmers offering to keep solar farms working […]

tractor with round hay bale

Wisconsin Farms See Upturn In Women And Millennial Producers… And Goats

From WISContext, April 30, 2019. The United States Department of Agriculture has released its 2017 agricultural census, and it documents a large and diverse farming economy in Wisconsin, but also one in flux. The census is conducted every 5 years, with the results intended to inform federal policy decisions. The periodic surveys are also useful […]

household chemicals

How to Minimize Exposures to Hormone Disrupters

From The New York Times, April 1, 2019. “We tend to think hormone disrupters are a mom and baby issue,” said Dr. Leonardo Trasande, the chief of the division of environmental pediatrics at N.Y.U. School of Medicine. “But it literally can be a life and death matter for folks who are not even trying to […]

drop of water above pool of water


From the University of Wisconsin Water Research Institute, February 20, 2019. One of the familiar faces around Goodnight Hall—the home of the Aquatic Sciences Center—since spring 2018 is Associate Fellow Steven R. Greb. Retired after 32 fruitful years with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR), Greb continues to protect Wisconsin’s waters using innovative technology. […]

glass filling with water from faucet

IN DEPTH: Wisconsinites fight for quality water

From WiscNews, February 8, 2019. Having clean water is not something people always can take for granted. In the northern Juneau County town of Armenia, residents worry about one contaminant in particular: nitrates. Of the 104 wells recently surveyed in the Armenia and Port Edwards areas, more than 40 percent contained nitrate levels exceeding the […]

bowl of ice cream with a few blueberries

Are ‘Natural Flavors’ Really Natural?

From the New York Times, February 1, 2019. Food manufacturers add flavorings to a surprising number of basic products, like Breyers Natural Vanilla ice cream. Q. I heard that “natural flavors” added to flavored seltzer water are not natural, because of a loophole in the regulations covering additives. Is that true? A. Government regulations define […]