Kentucky agricultural cash receipts, net farm income rebound in past year from 2016 levels

Kentucky agricultural cash receipts and net farm income rebounded in the past year from 2016 levels, but are still well below the record levels set earlier in the decade. Agricultural economists from the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment are projecting 2017 farm cash receipts to be $5.6 billion, which is a 3.5 percent increase from 2016. Preliminary indications also...

Rural Blog: Study says lack of affordable health care one of biggest problems facing nation’s farmers

A new study funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture says that lack of access to affordable health care is one of the biggest problems facing American farmers, affecting their risk management, productivity, health, retirement, the need for a secondary source of income, and land access for new farmers. “The rising cost of healthcare and the availability of affordable health insurance have...

Kentucky Farm Bureau sends 300 members to Washington to discuss agriculture issues

Kentucky Farm Bureau’s (KFB) volunteer leaders continue the organization’s grassroots policy development process this month as they head to Washington, D.C., with their list of 2017 national priority issues and a willingness to serve as “The Voice of Kentucky Agriculture.” The group, consisting of nearly 300 KFB members from more than 60 different counties, has scheduled a series of strategic...

More jobs than graduates in food, agriculture, renewable resources and environment, study says

From 2015 to 2020 there will be 57,900 average annual openings for graduates with bachelor’s or higher degrees in food, agriculture, renewable natural resources, or the environment, says a report by Purdue University and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. But not enough graduates are expected to be experts in those fields, says the report. Of those jobs, 46 percent will be in management and business,...

Commentary: You can help state's hungry and farmers during Farms to Food Banks Month

By James Comer Special to KyForward   When you donate a part of your state tax refund to the Farms to Food Banks Trust Fund, you’re helping Kentuckians in unfortunate circumstances – some of them your friends and neighbors – gain access to fresh, nutritious, local foods.   You’re also helping Kentucky farmers make a living. It’s good for economic development, and it’s consistent...

Ag radio host Ray Bowman still providing ‘balanced information for a balanced diet’

One of the best-known agriculture communicators in Kentucky, Ray Bowman broadcasts The Food and Farm Show regularly on America’s Web Radio. (Photo from Facebook)   By Tim Thornberry KyForward correspondent   As a longtime agricultural journalist, Ray Bowman has seen technological changes that seemed unimaginable when he started 40 years ago. But the radio broadcaster has adapted –...

The Rural Blog: Vilsack calls for ‘outrage,’
not ‘disappointment,’ at defeat of Farm Bill

By Al Cross Special to KyForward   In his first major speech since last Thursday’s surprise defeat of the Farm Bill, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said rural advocates have failed to express proper outrage about it. And his 42 minutes of remarks at the National Rural Assembly’s gathering near Bethesda, Md., also laid out some of the talking points he thinks they should make to...

Agriculture responsible for $2.4 billion a year, one in nine jobs in Fayette Co., report shows

Fayette County agriculture accounts for one in nine jobs and $2.4 billion in annual revenue, according to a report by University of Kentucky College of Agriculture researchers.   (Photo by Matt Barton, UK College of Agriculture) The study is one of the first to include businesses that are totally dedicated to agriculture, such as veterinary clinics, farm associations, agriculture-specific media...

Tim Thornberry: Even in challenging times, Kentucky agriculture scores a record year

Remember that unofficial creed of the Postal Service? “Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.”   The idea may be better suited for the agricultural industry these days, at least in Kentucky.   “Neither bad economy nor record heat and drought nor fiscal cliffs nor lack of a Farm Bill can keep our farm...