Heritage grains are trendy. Walk through a health food store and see packages of grains grown long before modern seed technology created hybrid varieties, grains eaten widely outside of the developed world: amaranth, sorghum, quinoa.
But there’s another grain with tremendous potential growing on the Great Plains: millet.
Consumers can rest assured that even with the government shutdown that went into effect on Tuesday, all of the meat, poultry and eggs bought from the grocery store will be inspected as usual by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
But that’s not necessarily the case for other foods -- like cheese, produce and boxes of cereal. Inspections for these products fall under the purview of the Food and Drug Administration, which had to furlough 45 percent of its staff on Tuesday.
The Missouri Department of Conservation recently introduced plans to include public input on designated conservation areas around the state. The new process is meant to help hikers, fishers and hunters express what they like and dislike regarding the planning and maintenance of the areas.
The program shells out to farmers and land owners regardless of need or loss. It’s a hold-out from a farm bill that promised an end to subsidies and it’s holding on only because Congress is so dysfunctional.
Missouri House Speaker Tim Jones is planning a statewide tour that will focus on agricultural issues.
The Eureka Republican will make about a half-dozen stops Oct. 15-17 with visits to farms, agricultural products plants and bioenergy facilities. Jones wants to talk with farmers and gather information for the 2014 legislative session.
Communities on the schedule include California and Sedalia.
This is an installment of the 2013 edition of My Farm Roots, Harvest Public Media’s series chronicling Americans’ connection to the land. Click here to explore more My Farm Roots stories and to share your own.