livestock livestock

Researchers have won a prize for discovering that a cow's genetics determine which microbes populate its gut. Some of those microbes produce the greenhouse gas methane that comes out of cow belches and farts and ends up in the atmosphere. Charlie Litchfield/AP hide caption

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Charlie Litchfield/AP

Not only are kids raising animals and learning the how-tos of vaccinations and record-keeping, 4-H'ers are also being taught how to add up the costs and weigh them against future profits. Darren Huck/The Washington Post/Getty Images hide caption

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Darren Huck/The Washington Post/Getty Images

Farmer Wendy Johnson markets hogs, chickens, eggs and seasonal turkeys. She also grows organic row crops at Joia Food Farm near Charles City, Iowa. Amy Mayer/Harvest Public Media hide caption

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Amy Mayer/Harvest Public Media

At the Iowa State University Beef Nutrition Farm, the cattle eat carefully formulated rations. Researchers there are trying to test new types of animal feed. Amy Mayer/Iowa Public Radio hide caption

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Amy Mayer/Iowa Public Radio

Beef carcasses hang in the sales cooler at the JBS beef plant in Greeley, Colo. Stephanie Paige Ogburn/KUNC hide caption

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Stephanie Paige Ogburn/KUNC

Inside The World's Largest Food Company You've Probably Never Heard Of

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Gayland Regier carries buckets of feed to his cattle in southeast Nebraska. Imported cattle make up a small portion of the American beef supply, but many American farmers and ranchers are concerned that foreign-sourced meat could distort their markets. courtesy of Grant Gerlock/NET News/Harvest Public Media hide caption

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courtesy of Grant Gerlock/NET News/Harvest Public Media

The Cornucopia Institute commissioned this photo of an organic egg producer in Saranac, Mich. According to Cornucopia, the facility is owned by Herbruck's Poultry Ranch, which has a license to maintain up to 1 million chickens on this site. Courtesy of The Cornucopia Institute hide caption

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Courtesy of The Cornucopia Institute

Free-range chickens stand in a pen at an organic-accredited poultry farm in Germany. Joern Pollex/Getty Images hide caption

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Joern Pollex/Getty Images

Chicken Confidential: How This Bird Came To Rule The Cultural Roost

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The turkeys at Kate Stillman's farm don't have to be loaded on a trailer and driven hundreds of miles this year. They now meet their ends on the same farm where they lived their lives. Chris Arnold/NPR hide caption

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Chris Arnold/NPR

For More Local Turkeys To Hit Holiday Tables, You Need An Abattoir

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Researchers say there's plenty the beef industry can do to use less land and water and emit fewer greenhouse gas emissions. But producers may need to charge a premium to make those changes. iStockphoto.com hide caption

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iStockphoto.com