Orchards like this one in Adams County, PA, and other U.S. farms face worldwide competition for their apples and apple products due to imports.
Brad C. Bower/AP
October 17, 2012 We may be able to grow enough fruits and vegetables on land we already have if we're smart about how we do it, says World Wildlife Foundation expert Jason Clay. Take the James Beard Foundation's food quiz to see just how literate you are on this and other agriculture matters.
American apple growers realized that if they used dwarfing rootstocks and planted their trees closer together, they could increase their harvest of apples per acre by 200 to 300 percent.
October 8, 2012 American apple trees used to be big. So what made them shrink? Farmers decided to use dwarfing rootstocks.
October 4, 2012 Fortified peanut paste saves lives in Haiti and other places where malnutrition is a problem, but producing it locally costs more than importing it from faraway factories in Europe because of labor and other costs. Still, feeding programs are willing to pay a little more, for now.
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October 3, 2012 Some farmers growing shrimp in Midwestern ponds say they do it for love, not money. Despite recent advances in feed and efforts by several states to make shrimp-farming here a viable business, it's still fraught with too much economic risk to attract many growers.
Sens. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., and Pat Toomey, R-Pa., talk to reporters about the farm bill at the U.S. Capitol in June.
J. Scott Applewhite/AP
September 19, 2012 The farm bill is likely to be left on the table when Congress leaves for recess, but don't panic. The nutrition and commodity programs will likely be extended after Election Day at current funding levels for a while, if the last session is any guide.
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Scientist Robert Koch holding a post-mortem on an ox thought to have died of rinderpest, circa 1900.
Reinhold Thiele/Getty Images
September 14, 2012 Enlisting nomadic African herders finally helped the world eliminate the cattle plague rinderpest. But the veterinarians, who had the power to shut the program down, had to be rewarded for success, too.
A shopper surveys the produce at Pacifica Farmers Market in Pacifica, Calif., in 2011.
September 4, 2012 Even though organic food has less pesticide residue, a new review of several recent studies finds scant evidence that it has more nutrients or fewer risky bacteria than conventionally grown food. But researchers note that organic agriculture can bring environmental benefits.
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Grandpa Traub — corn former and millionaire.
August 23, 2012 Taxpayers spend $7 billion a year to subsidize crop insurance. Economists don't like it. Neither do some farmers.
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August 17, 2012 When salesmen can't compete on price, they try to out-nice each other.
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August 16, 2012 Record revenues, rocketing land values and federally subsidized insurance.
Sweet potato evangelist Maria Isabel Andrade from the International Potato Center drives around Mozambique in her orange Toyota Land Cruiser.
August 15, 2012 In Africa, a nutrition success story: Swapping orange sweet potatoes for white ones is improving the health of children by boosting vitamin A levels. Researchers are now trying to duplicate their success with other crops.
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Check out some of the world's most important - and threatened - aquifers. Click to see a high-resolution version of this map.
August 8, 2012 Farmers are emptying some of the world's most important aquifers faster than rainfall can replenish them, which means less water for everyone. This map from the journal Nature shows where irrigation is doing the most damage.
Potatoes come in all colors, like these Red Erik, Snowball, Cariboo, Purple Peruvian, Caribe and French Red varieties.
August 2, 2012 Will tomorrow's U.S. supermarket stock 10 kinds of potatoes? Potato geneticist Chuck Brown hopes so. He's been working to introduce the American market to purple, orange and red potato varieties, and bring back the sizzle potatoes once enjoyed.
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These piglets on the Hardin farm in Danville, Ind., are going to cost more to feed than they will fetch at market.
July 25, 2012 The crops taking the worst hit from the current drought are the ones we feed to animals, like corn. Higher corn prices mean it can cost more to feed pigs and cattle than they will fetch at market, meaning higher meat prices for all.
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June 13, 2012 Midwestern farmers experiencing unusually good yields are OK with losing some farm bill subsidies as Congress negotiates changes this year. But some of their Southern counterparts are arguing against it.
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