Author Archive

Jerry Hagstrom


A Fight is Growing Over Food Labels

The battles over country-of-origin and GMO labels have intensified in Congress this summer.


How Obama's EPA Is Making Life Difficult for Clinton

The agency's push and pull on ethanol policy has created a hurdle for the Democratic frontrunner.


USDA Chief Unveils Campaign to Combat Childhood Hunger

Tom Vilsack details new grant programs to feed the poorest children and improve school performance.


EPA Chief Won't Ditch the Waters Rule, But She Is Digging for Answers

Gina McCarthy is reaching out to critics in the farm community and pledging to respond to their concerns.


USDA unveils details of shutdown plan

Most employees would be furloughed, but meat, poultry and egg inspection services would continue.


USDA Native American case moves closer to resolution

The class action suit claims the Agriculture Department discriminated against Native Americans who applied for farm loans.


Food safety undersecretary sets priorities

Elisabeth Hagen showed little interest in the creation of a single food safety agency during hearing.


OMB's handling of USDA funding has lawmaker fuming

Agriculture panel chairman seeks an investigation into shifts in money for mandatory programs.


USDA chief gets heat for Sherrod firing

Vilsack is under fire from the Congressional Black Caucus, the Federation of Southern Cooperatives and the Rural Coalition, among others.


Agriculture chief fosters better relationship between EPA and farmers

Regular meetings planned nationwide to improve communication between environmental officials and crop producers.


Black-farmers group cheers deal in war bill

Supplemental includes money to pay for the settlement of a black farmers' anti-discrimination case against USDA.


Emergency appropriation for black farmers is unlikely

House leadership, administration would prefer to provide money for Pigford case settlement through regular appropriations.


Agriculture Department's soybean investigation nearing end

Two-year investigation into possible misspending in the soybean research program nears conclusion.


Push is on to find $1.15B for black farmers' settlement

If Congress does not appropriate the money by March 31, then any of the participants could back out of the deal.


Agriculture chief says black farmer discrimination settlement needs $1.15B

Obama administration wants Congress to provide the money by March 31, says Secretary Tom Vilsack.


Vilsack names more key deputies

USDA secretary's new appointees do not require Senate confirmation.


Empty Agriculture offices, including food safety, raise concerns

Five key leadership positions remain vacant despite several outbreaks of food-borne illness in 2009.


USDA chief plans for Afghanistan trip

Agriculture development is the Obama administration's top nonmilitary priority in Afghanistan.


Head of Foreign Agricultural Service reassigned

Michael Michener had come under fire for focusing on Afghanistan projects at the expense of the agency’s traditional roles.


Agriculture chief disputes USDA climate bill study

Vilsack says less cropland will be converted to forestland than report suggests.