Agriculture News from Across the Nation

U.S. Farm Structure: Declining—But Persistent—Small Commercial Farms (Amber Waves)
by Robert A. Hoppe
EXCERPT: The continuing shift in production away from small commercial farms to larger farms is driven by financial pressures and aging operators; Some small commercial farms are profitable, while others stay in business by accepting low returns for their labor; Small commercial farms produced 22 percent of the Nation’s farm output in 2007.

Water Wars in California: A Glimpse of the Future for Texas Farmers and Ranchers? (Texas Farm Bureau)
by Matt Felder
EXCERPT: Today, California’s agricultural industry is on the front lines of a major water crisis. Yes, Mother Nature has a big hand when it comes to supplying water. But the perpetual drought in the San Joaquin Valley, found in the southern part of the Central Valley, is viewed as a regulatory phenomenon whose responsibility lies in the hands of the state and federal governments.

Pennsylvania Lost 14 Percent of Its Dairy Farms Between 2006 and 2009 (Scranton Times Tribune)
by James Haggerty
EXCERPT: “The farms we see now are survivors, but that doesn’t mean that all the ones we see now will be survivors next year,” said James Dunn, Ph.D., an agricultural economist at Penn State University.

Agriculture and EPA at Odds Over Chesapeake Bay Restoration Remedy (DTN Progressive Farmer)
by Chris Clayton
EXCERPT: Farmers in the six-state Chesapeake Bay region are worried that tighter restrictions on nitrogen and phosphorus will hurt livestock and poultry producers and wreck the region’s ag economy.

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