Arkansas Agriculture

Local & Regional News
6:04 am
Fri June 14, 2013

World Of Weather Opposites For Arkansas Farmers

Some Arkansas farmers are still planting, even though it's the middle of June.

Agricultural economist Scott Stiles of the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture says even some rice is still going in the ground.

A year ago, growers had an early spring and a long stretch of mild weather, making it easy to plant early.

This year, frequent rains in east Arkansas caused delays for many row crop growers.

Stiles says the state likely won't have the 1 million acres of corn that was expected. Planting this late can lower corn yields.

Local & Regional News
6:14 am
Tue June 11, 2013

Arkansas Senators Praise Farm Bill Passage

Arkansas' U.S. Senate delegation is praising the passage of a farm bill. The bill passed the Senate on Monday on a 66-27 vote. 

The five-year, half-trillion bill includes greater subsidies for rice farmers and more aid for purchasing crop insurance. 

Democratic Sen. Mark Pryor said the bill offers protections to farmers in the South and retains a catfish inspection program.

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Local & Regional News
4:46 pm
Sun June 9, 2013

Tomatoes Scarce For Arkansas Pink Tomato Festival

The annual Bradley County Pink Tomato Festival is about to start and officials are concerned about a potential lack of tomatoes.

The festival began with the Grand Tomato Ball on Friday with the main attractions of food, music and arts and crafts scheduled for June 13-15 in the southeastern Arkansas town.

But organizers say the main attraction - tomatoes - are scarce and smaller than usual.

Agricultural Research
9:36 am
Thu May 30, 2013

Grants For Sustainable Strawberry Projects Awarded


Close to $3 million in grant money is being awarded to 16 agricultural researchers to develop more sustainable methods for growing strawberries.

The project is funded by the Walmart Foundation and the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture's Center for Agricultural and Rural Sustainability is administering the awards. Winners were announced Wednesday.

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Local & Regional News
6:53 am
Thu May 16, 2013

Boozman And Pryor Update Constituents On Farm Bill, IRS Probe

Efforts to overhaul the federal farm bill are finally gaining traction on Capitol Hill.

U.S. Senator John Boozman of Arkansas voted to help get the bill out of the Senate Agriculture Committee on Tuesday.

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Politics and Social Media
6:27 pm
Wed May 15, 2013

Pryor Hosting Twitter 'Town Hall' On Agriculture

U.S. Sen. Mark Pryor of Arkansas is hosting a Twitter town hall to answer questions about the farm bill and other agricultural issues.

Pryor's office said the Democratic lawmaker will answer questions via Twitter about the bill, agricultural research, regulations and domestic food availability. Arkansans can tweet their questions using the hashtag (hash)AskPryor starting at 8:15 a.m. Thursday.

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Buffalo National River Watershed
2:54 pm
Tue May 7, 2013

Arkansas Hog Farm Opens Doors To Reporters Amidst Environmental Oposition

Jason Henson, co-owner of C&H Farms, stands in a pen of sows on a recent media tour of the new farm. Its placement in the watershed of the protected Buffalo National River has many worried that runoff from the farm could contaminate the national waterway.
Credit Jacqueline Froelich / KUAF

As opposition continues against a newly permitted industrial swine-breeding farm now operating in the watershed of the protected Buffalo National River in Newton County, its owners have remained mostly silent until Monday when members of the media were invited for a tour.

Campbell and Henson (C&H) Hog Farms is situated along a rugged mountain bench about 20 miles southeast of downtown Jasper. From the outside its new double-barn confined feeding animal operation (CAFO) looks ordinary, inside 824 large pink sows will soon give birth.

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Tyson Food Donation
6:30 am
Thu April 18, 2013

Tyson Foods Makes Major Food Donation To Arkansas Pantry

Tyson World Headquarters
Credit Tyson Foods

Tyson Foods has donated more than 27,000 pounds of chicken to the Arkansas Rice Depot. 

The donation to the statewide food bank arrived Wednesday. Arkansas Rice Depot President and CEO Laura Rhea says the donation is essential to help the food bank support dozens of pantries and thousands of people in every Arkansas county. She says the group distributes 9 million pounds of food each year.

Tyson Foods officials say meat is one of the most-requested and least-available foods in food banks. The company says it has donated tens of millions of pounds of meat since 2000.  

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USDA Health Care Grants
6:44 am
Wed April 3, 2013

Arkansas Groups May Benefit From USDA Health Care Grants


The U.S. Department of Agriculture is taking applications for $3 million worth of health care projects for communities of up to 50,000 people in Arkansas and seven other states in the Delta region.

Undersecretary for Rural Development Dallas Tonsager says the Delta Health Care Services Grant Program covers 252 counties and parishes. The best proposals will get grants of $50,000 and up.

The money can be used for health care cooperatives, services, education and job training. Applications are due May 28.

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Local & Regional News
1:16 pm
Tue March 19, 2013

Insect Could Threaten Arkansas Soybean Crops

The kudzu bug.
Credit Marlin E. Rice, Pioneer Seed

Soybean growers in Arkansas are preparing for a possible invasion by an insect that’s damaging crops throughout the South. 

The kudzu bug sucks sap from soybean plants, weakening and stunting the plant's  growth. The tiny flying insects have already caused up to 20 percent yield losses in some untreated soybean fields in North Carolina.

Gus Lorenz, with the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture says stopping the pests can be difficult.

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