USDA, Latest Releases
Washington, D.C. May 27, 2015 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that farmers, ranchers and private forest landowners can now do business with U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) through a new online portal. With today’s launch of Conservation Client Gateway, producers will have the ability to work with conservation planners online to access Farm Bill programs, request assistance and track payments for their conservation activities.
WASHINGTON, May 27, 2015 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today that the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Blueprint for Stronger Service initiative has created $1.4 billion in savings, efficiencies, and cost avoidances, while the agriculture sector continues to experience its most productive period in history. Secretary Vilsack launched the initiative in 2012, directing USDA agencies to take steps to cut costs and modernize operations in order to become a stronger and more effective department.
WASHINGTON, May 26, 2015 - Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is now accepting applications to provide technical assistance to socially-disadvantaged groups in rural areas.
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today released the following statement regarding Senate passage of Trade Promotion Authority legislation:
WASHINGTON, May 22, 2015 - Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is accepting applications for its Distance Learning and Telemedicine (DLT) grant program, which provides increased access to education, training and health care resources in rural areas.
WASHINGTON, May 21, 2015 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) reminds farmers to file a Highly Erodible Land Conservation and Wetland Conservation Certification form (AD-1026) with their local USDA Service Center by June 1, 2015. The 2014 Farm Bill requires producers to have the form on file in order to remain eligible, or to become eligible for crop insurance premium support.
MEMPHIS, Tenn., May 21, 2015 – Today, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Deputy Secretary-General Mari Kiviniemi released a joint statement outlining three major themes guiding rural economic development policies.
WASHINGTON, May 20, 2015 – Memorial Day weekend marks the unofficial start to summer, and many Americans will celebrate with cookouts, camping, road trips and other activities that involve food. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is reminding families to take extra care not to let foodborne bacteria, which grows more quickly in hot weather, ruin the fun.
MEMPHIS, Tenn., May 20, 2015 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced USDA’s plan to implement a Farm Bill provision that will have a major policy impact on the way the Department helps rural communities plan and finance regional economic development strategies. The new Regional Development Priority (RDP) policy will make it easier for rural communities to access resources to invest in long-term community development efforts by giving priority to applications for Rural Development programs that include regional partnerships and strategies.
The potential to grow and make innovative products in rural America is limitless. Since 2009, the Obama Administration has made targeted investments to help rural businesses grow. Through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s projects in affordable housing, energy efficiency, roads and bridges, and internet access, coupled with loans and grants for rural businesses, the Administration has helped to attract and retain a talented rural labor force, improve connectivity and access to information, move products to market, and make rural communities competitive—ultimately supporting strong local economies and expanded opportunity for rural Americans.
MEMPHIS, TN, May 19 2015 - Today, leaders from 34 countries gathered in Memphis for the 10th Annual Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Rural Development Conference to discuss international strategies to address rural development in the 21st century, including creating jobs, building infrastructure, expanding access to health care, and making diversified rural investments. The theme of this year’s conference ‘National Prosperity through Modern Rural Policy: Competitiveness and Well-Being in Rural Regions’ engages the world’s leading policy officials, international experts, and representatives from the private sector to discuss how modern policies can help rural regions reach their full economic potential, support national growth and be globally competitive.
WASHINGTON, May 18, 2015 - Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) will invest approximately $21 million in additional Farm Bill dollars to help farmers and ranchers apply science-based solutions to mitigate the short and long term effects of drought. These investments will focus financial and technical assistance in the most severely drought-stricken areas in eight states to help crop and livestock producers apply conservation practices that increase irrigation efficiency, improve soil health and productivity, and ensure reliable water sources for livestock operations.
WASHINGTON, May 14, 2015 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) announced today that approximately $11.9 million in organic certification assistance is available through state departments of agriculture to make organic certification more affordable for organic producers and handlers across the country.
WASHINGTON, May 14, 2015 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced today that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is investing $6.5 million in the Ogallala Aquifer region this year to help farmers and ranchers conserve billions of gallons of water and improve water quality. Funding will be targeted to seven priority areas to support their primary water source and strengthen rural economies.
USDA Announces Funding for Smart Grid and 1,000 miles of line on 80th Anniversary of Rural ElectrificationSun, 05/10/2015 - 10:00pm
WASHINGTON, May 11, 2015 - Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that USDA is providing more than $100 million in loans to build or improve 1,000 miles of electric transmission and distribution lines for rural electric cooperative utilities in four states.
WASHINGTON, May 11, 2015 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced a new report showing tremendous demand for recent college graduates with a degree in agricultural programs with an estimated 57,900 high-skilled job openings annually in the food, agriculture, renewable natural resources, and environment fields in the United States.
U.S., Jordan Sign Agreement to Promote Agricultural Development and Trade, Support Humanitarian AssistanceSat, 05/09/2015 - 10:00pm
Amman, JORDAN, May 10, 2015 - U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack and Jordan Minister of Planning and International Cooperation Imad Fakhoury, today signed an agreement to support agricultural development and trade in Jordan.
USDA Announces $30 Million Available for Food Entrepreneurs and Agricultural Producers to Develop New ProductsThu, 05/07/2015 - 10:00pm
WASHINGTON, May 8, 2015 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that USDA is making $30 million available to farmers, ranchers and food entrepreneurs to develop new product lines. Funding will be made available through the USDA’s Value-Added Producer Grant (VAPG) program.
WASHINGTON, May 8 2015 - West-wide snowpack has mostly melted, according to data from the fifth 2015 forecast by the United States Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS).
Statement by U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on Final Communique by G-20 Agriculture MinistersThu, 05/07/2015 - 10:00pm
ISTANBUL, May 8, 2015 – U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack made the following statement today, May 8, after endorsing the final communique by the G-20 Agriculture Ministers in Istanbul, Turkey: