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The Domino Effect of One Purchase

Mié, 01/22/2014 - 5:17pm
Sometimes one action can have a ripple effect—an impact that spreads outward, touching much more than just the immediate surroundings.  We see it all the time in the process of agriculture. Weather changes crop yields, then ripples through the supply chain, impacting everything from the local economy to the national average of transportation costs.  Sometimes [...]

National FFA Officers Meet with Secretary Vilsack

Vie, 01/17/2014 - 4:51pm
“We are excited by the challenges you presented to us,” said FFA National Secretary Mitch Bayer at the conclusion of a half-hour meeting of National FFA officers with Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack at the USDA Whitten Building earlier this week. In his meeting with the officers, the Secretary covered a wide range of issues, including [...]

The Kindergarten Initiative: Connecting Students and their Families to the Worcester Food Environment

Vie, 01/17/2014 - 4:51pm
Massachusetts Farm to School Project and the Worcester Public Schools are helping kindergarteners understand how and where food is grown. They are teaching children about nutrition through local food tastings, farm and farmer visits, cooking demonstrations and take home produce. The Worcester Kindergarten Initiative is running at nine elementary schools in Worcester, MA, for the 2013-2014 [...]

Secretary’s Column: Fighting Rural Poverty in Appalachia and the Delta Region

Vie, 01/17/2014 - 4:51pm
Cross posted from the Huffington Post: Rural America faces a unique set of challenges when it comes to combating poverty in our towns and communities. Too often, rural people and places are hard to reach or otherwise underserved—but not forgotten. I believe that USDA and its partners have the tools and the wherewithal to expand [...]

Expanding SNAP Farmers Market Access through Innovative Partnerships

Jue, 01/16/2014 - 10:43am
America’s farmers’ markets are a great source of fresh fruits and vegetables and other healthy foods, and at USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service (FNS), we’ve made it a priority to expand healthy food access through farmers’ markets to those participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). It’s a win-win situation because, for farmers markets, [...]

Enhancing the Local School Wellness Environment

Mar, 01/14/2014 - 4:28pm
Local school wellness policies are an important tool for parents, local educational agencies, and school districts to promote student wellness, prevent and reduce childhood obesity, and provide assurance that school meal guidelines meet federal standards. They help communicate nutrition guidelines for all foods available on the school campus and include goals for nutrition education, physical [...]

Secretary’s Column: A New Food, Farm and Jobs Bill to Fight Hunger Here at Home

Vie, 01/10/2014 - 3:40pm
America’s farmers and ranchers work hard every day to put healthy food on our tables. Thanks to their incredible productivity, we have the capacity to produce enough food not only for every American family, but for much of the world. In a nation with such an abundance of food resources, it is unthinkable and unacceptable [...]

Fighting the War on Poverty in Rural America

Jue, 01/09/2014 - 3:20pm
Fifty years ago, President Johnson declared the beginning of “an unconditional war on poverty in America,” challenging us to bring to bear all of our available tools and resources to address poverty and income inequality across America. Born poor in the small town of Stonewall, Texas, President Johnson knew well that poverty is not just [...]

Bringing New Markets to Puerto Rico’s Producers

Mié, 01/08/2014 - 2:55pm
In any business venture, the key to reaching a new market is starting with accurate and comprehensive information. For American agricultural producers and suppliers looking at USDA feeding programs as a potential market, having a clear understanding of the rules, regulations and requirements is the best start on the path to success. USDA encourages new [...]

Spice It Up in the New Year – MyPlate Holiday Makeover Week 8

Lun, 01/06/2014 - 2:28pm
The MyPlate Team offers the final “Makeover Monday” recipe this week on the USDA blog and the MyPlate Facebook page. I love mushrooms and could probably eat them every day. They come in a variety of sizes, shapes, colors, textures, and flavors and can be worked into every meal. On their own, mushrooms are pretty [...]

USDA Makes Meat and Grain Serving Flexibilities Permanent

Vie, 01/03/2014 - 2:12pm
As a mother and a grandmother, and as a school nutrition professional who has served at the local, state and national levels, I know the unique challenges and rewards that come along with helping to raise children—particularly when it comes to good nutrition. Feeding kids, and feeding them well, can be tough, but I am [...]

Resolve to Fight Foodborne Illness in 2014

Lun, 12/30/2013 - 1:30pm
As 2013 comes to a close and 2014 draws nearer, many people begin to think about ways in which to make their lives better in the year to come and formulate various resolutions to achieve those goals. Some people may want to lose weight and/or get more exercise. Other people may want to read more [...]

Decida Luchar Contra las Enfermedades Transmitidas por los Alimentos en el 2014

Lun, 12/30/2013 - 1:30pm
Según el 2013 llega a su fin y el 2014 se acerca, muchas personas comienzan a pensar en formas para mejorar sus vidas en el año por venir y formular diversas resoluciones para alcanzar dichos objetivos. Algunas personas quieren querer bajar de peso y/o hacer más ejercicio. Otras personas pueden querer leer más y gastar [...]

Cheers to Good Health with MyPlate – MyPlate Holiday Makeover Week 7

Lun, 12/30/2013 - 1:30pm
With two little ones in the house, I’m always looking for ways that I can introduce them to new flavors and textures of foods and beverages. This Sparkling New Year’s Cider recipe does just that! The 100 % apple juice is familiar and adds a touch of sweetness, while the cloves, nutmeg, and cinnamon introduce [...]

A Helping Hand for Those Who Serve

Lun, 12/23/2013 - 6:50pm
The following OpEd was posted by Huffington Post this afternoon: Everywhere I go, I hear stories of seniors, veterans, and the working poor who use the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). This includes returned servicemen and women who spent holidays away from their families, missing major milestones while abroad in service to their country; previous [...]

A Carton of Eggs – A True Baker’s Dozen

Lun, 12/23/2013 - 6:50pm
  The holiday season is a busy time of year for bakers and chefs.  From egg nog and cookie exchanges to fruit cakes and meringue pies, increased baking and gift-giving means you’ll need to know just what to look for when you buy one of your key ingredients…eggs. When shopping for eggs, consumers should look [...]

Jamón par alas Fiestas

Lun, 12/23/2013 - 6:50pm
¡Esta es la época para el jamón! Si usted es fanático del jamón, esta es la época para usted.  Aparte del Día de Pascua, más jamones son servidos durante las fiestas de invierno que en ninguna otra época del año.  Solamente visite un familiar o amigo y probablemente le será servido este platillo tan fácil [...]

Lighten Up Your Holiday Dessert with MyPlate – MyPlate Holiday Makeover Week 6

Lun, 12/23/2013 - 12:49pm
The MyPlate Team continues to share “Makeover Monday” recipes each week on the USDA blog and the MyPlate Facebook page through January 6th. I was first introduced to banana pudding, a traditional southern dessert, during the holidays when I moved to Virginia from North Dakota. It tasted great, but I remember leaving the dinner table [...]

Going Ham for the Holidays

Lun, 12/23/2013 - 12:49pm
‘Tis the season for ham! If you’re a ham fan, this one’s for you. In addition to Easter, more hams are served during the winter holidays than any other time of year. Just visit friends or family and you’ll likely be offered this easy-to-prepare-and-serve smoky, tangy, pink meat. Unfortunately, it is easy to contract a [...]

MyPlate Holiday 10 Tips – Make Healthier Holiday Choices

Vie, 12/20/2013 - 12:34pm
The MyPlate Team continues to share “Makeover Monday” recipes each week on the USDA blog and the MyPlate Facebook page through January 6th. This holiday season, the nutritionists at the Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion have shared some of their favorite holiday recipes during our MyPlate Holiday Makeover Series. Today, we offer a new [...]