Dan Charles Dan Charles is NPR's food and agriculture correspondent.
Dan Charles
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Dan Charles

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Dan Charles
Maggie Starbard/NPR

Dan Charles

Correspondent, Food and Agriculture

Dan Charles is NPR's food and agriculture correspondent.

Primarily responsible for covering farming and the food industry, Charles focuses on the stories of culture, business, and the science behind what arrives on your dinner plate.

This is his second time working for NPR; from 1993 to 1999, Charles was a technology correspondent at NPR. He returned in 2011.

During his time away from NPR, Charles was an independent writer and radio producer and occasionally filled in at NPR on the Science and National desks, and at Weekend Edition. Over the course of his career Charles has reported on software engineers in India, fertilizer use in China, dengue fever in Peru, alternative medicine in Germany, and efforts to turn around a troubled school in Washington, DC.

In 2009-2010, he taught journalism in Ukraine through the Fulbright program. He has been guest researcher at the Institute for Peace Research and Security Policy at the University of Hamburg, Germany, and a Knight Science Journalism fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

From 1990 to 1993, Charles was a U.S. correspondent for New Scientist, a major British science magazine.

The author of two books, Charles wrote Master Mind: The Rise and Fall of Fritz Haber, The Nobel Laureate Who Launched the Age of Chemical Warfare (Ecco, 2005) and Lords of the Harvest: Biotech, Big Money, and the Future of Food (Perseus, 2001) about the making of genetically engineered crops.

Charles graduated magna cum laude from American University with a degree in economics and international affairs. After graduation Charles spent a year studying in Bonn, which was then part of West Germany, through the German Academic Exchange Service.

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Story Archive

Pengyin Chen, professor of soybean breeding and genetics at the University of Missouri, in his test plots of soybeans near the town of Portageville. Dan Charles/NPR hide caption

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Rogue Weedkiller Vapors Are Threatening Soybean Science

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Emissions rise from the Duke Energy coal-fired Asheville Power Plant ahead of Hurricane Florence in Arden, N.C., in September 2018. Regulators are supposed to make sure Duke Energy delivers reliable power at the lowest possible cost — and that's always been interpreted as cost to the consumer, not cost to the environment. Charles Mostoller/Bloomberg via Getty Images hide caption

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Charles Mostoller/Bloomberg via Getty Images

North Carolina Tries To Clean Up Its Electricity

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Why Food Reformers Have Mixed Feelings About Eco-Labels

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John Draper pours glyphosate into the tank of his sprayer at the University of Maryland's Wye Research and Education Center. Dan Charles/NPR hide caption

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Safe Or Scary? The Shifting Reputation Of Glyphosate, AKA Roundup

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Lindsey Balbierz for NPR

Companies are using new gene-editing tools to alter the DNA of food crops. One of these products is a soybean with a healthier kind of oil. Johannes Eisele/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Johannes Eisele/AFP/Getty Images

Will Gene-Edited Food Be Government Regulated?

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A bowl of Honey Toasted Kernza. General Mills made 6,000 boxes of the cereal and is passing them out to spread the word about perennial grains. Olivia Sun/NPR hide caption

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Can This Breakfast Cereal Help Save The Planet?

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These Palmer amaranth — or pigweed — plants, seen growing in a greenhouse at Kansas State University, appear to be resistant to multiple herbicides. Dan Charles/NPR hide caption

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Dan Charles/NPR

As Weeds Outsmart The Latest Weedkillers, Farmers Are Running Out Of Easy Options

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Cattle eating a mixture of antibiotic-free corn and hay at Corrin Farms, near Neola, Iowa. Their meat is sold by Niman Ranch. Dan Charles/NPR hide caption

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Some In The Beef Industry Are Bucking The Widespread Use Of Antibiotics. Here's How

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A biomechanical model of producing an "f" sound with an overbite (left) compared with an edge-to-edge bite (right). Some linguists are arguing that the advent of softer food thousands of years ago led to changes in biting patterns and, eventually, to more frequent use of sounds like "f" and "v" in human languages. Scott Moisik hide caption

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Scott Moisik

Fighting Global Warming Requires Changes In How Cows Are Fed

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Toronto's King Street May Lead To A Carbon-Neutral City

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Solar panels fill a field in Provence-Alpes-Cote d'Azur, France. Panoramic Images/Getty Images hide caption

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It's 2050 And This Is How We Stopped Climate Change

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William Happer, a Princeton scientist who is doubtful of the dangers of climate change, appears to be leading a White House challenge to the government's conclusion that global warming is a threat. Gage Skidmore/Flickr hide caption

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Gage Skidmore/Flickr

Meet The White House's New Chief Climate Change Skeptic

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