business beat

Business Beat
6:01 pm
Wed October 31, 2012

For small business owners, election highlights key issues

Daniel Finke moved his company Finspeed into this 12,000 square foot building in Moberly thanks to a tax abatement from the city.
Credit Kristofor Husted / KBIA

By most accounts, Missouri is a pink state.

Not red. Not blue. Pink.

But, when thousands of small business owners in Missouri were asked which candidate was more supportive of small business, 35 percent chose President Barack Obama, 24 percent picked Gov. Mitt Romney, and 41 percent said they were unsure. (That’s from a recent George Washington University and Thumbtack poll.)

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Business Beat
5:37 pm
Wed October 31, 2012

Campaigns focus on small business but not farm bill

Small business owner Daniel Finke of Moberly says fair trade is the most important issue to him this election when it comes to his company.
Credit Kristofor Husted / KBIA

Countdown to Election Day is upon us.

And while business development continues to surge as a hot topic this campaign season, the expired farm bill seems to have disappeared off candidates' radars completely. Harvest Public Media’s Amy Mayer has this report on just how much candidates are talking farm farm country.

By most accounts, Missouri is a pink state.

Not red. Not blue. Pink.

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5:12 pm
Wed October 31, 2012

Even in farm country, campaigns not focusing on farm policy

Kathleen Masterson Harvest Public Media

When Congress recessed for the election season without passing a new farm bill, many observers thought farmers would demand explanations as campaign trails blazed through small towns. But despite its importance in farm country, the farm bill and farm policy are largely being overshadowed by other campaign issues.

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Business Beat
4:23 pm
Wed October 24, 2012

Fighting for food

This lucky lot of produce beat its weed nemeses back at the farm.
File Photo KBIA

When it comes to the business of food, there’s a rivalry around every corner. You’ve got fights for prime farmland, wars over water use, even buying food at the grocery store has its competition with household bills encroaching on family budgets for the shopping list.

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Business Beat
5:32 pm
Wed October 3, 2012

Water blues and prison maintenance blues

The administration building is one of the oldest on the prison site. Its decaying façade sits opposite a recently-opened federal courthouse across the street.
Samantha Sunne KBIA

Water use has become a hot issue among Midwest farmers after this summer's drought. Nebraska irrigates more acres of farmland than any other state in the nation. Kansas is also near the top. And that Irrigation infrastructure helped some farmers keep the drought at bay this year. Their fields stayed green long after others withered away. But as Grant Gerlock reports for Harvest Public Media, using so much water now may force some farmers to use less water in the future.

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5:08 pm
Wed October 3, 2012

Mo. state prison's maintenance blues

Kary Scott shares a dance with his service dog, Cisco, at the "Inside the Walls" festival promoting the Missouri State Penitentiary as a tourist destination.
Lukas Udstuen KBIA

As a 5-piece band wound its way through an acoustic set of music, guests slowly shuffled into the “Inside the Walls” festival at the Missouri State Penitentiary. To the southwest, the main entrance to the prison towered over the festival.

Charles Vaughan used to live in a house across the street. He remembers the 1954 riots, which were the worst in the history of the penitentiary. Vaughan remembers his dad and brother were on top of a nearby building with guns.

“There was a big fire going on," he said. "My mom was keeping me in the house which upset me because I wanted to get on the roof and my mom was piling furniture right in front of the front door.”

But now the penitentiary looks much lonelier. Its paint peels. Some of its buildings have been torn down. In fact — of those that remain, some parts are even off limits to tours – this is due to a process Steve Picker calls “demolition by neglect.” He’s the former executive director of the Jefferson City Convention and Visitor’s Bureau.

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6:48 pm
Wed September 5, 2012

Drought could edge livestock producers out of business

Lead in text: 
Currently, the USDA expects the prices of beef, pork, poultry and dairy to shoot up five percent next year. You can blame the drought for a lot of that increase as this summer a lot of small livestock producers are struggling just to stay in business. A version of this story ran on KBIA's Business Beat, a weekly program about business and economics in mid-Missouri.
Brandt Dairy sits on Swan Creek at the end of a meandering gravel road in Linn, Missouri. The farm is bucolic with its twin silos, red barn and black-and
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Business Beat
5:56 pm
Wed August 15, 2012

Farm bill holdup leaves farmers in limbo

Ed Greiman, a cattle producer and president-elect of the Iowa Cattlemen, climbs onto the front of a truck hauling silage on his ranch near Garner, Iowa. Like other ranchers, he's getting a feel for what life would be like without a farm bill.
Clay Masters Harvest Public Media

This week on the show, what would happen if Congress doesn’t pass a farm bill? Plus, a quick check in on the new student-oriented bus route in Columbia, that started running this week; and what it might mean for the city’s overall transit system.

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Business Beat
10:34 am
Thu August 9, 2012

Huge food distributor phasing out gestation crates in pork production

Elite Pork Partnership keeps sows and piglets inside in facilities like this one Carroll, Iowa
Sarah McCammon Harvest Public Media

This week: North America’s largest food distributor is phasing out its use of gestation crates in pork production. Plus, a story about the drought’s impact on ranchers in the Midwest.

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Business Beat
6:06 pm
Wed August 1, 2012

Entrepreneurship increases in economic recession, new study says

Maria Figueroa-Armijos is a doctoral student in the University of Missouri Truman School of Public Affairs
University of Missouri

Microsoft, Staples, and SouthWest Airlines.

What do these companies have in common? Yes, they're big companies, they employ a lot of people and they're successful. But here's one more thing--all of these companies were created in a period of economic downturn.  The Fortune 500 is littered with stories like this.

Business Beat spoke with Maria Figueroa-Armijos who's one of the authors of a new study which suggests that certain types of entrepreneurs are on the rise and it’s not in spite of the recession--it’s because of it.

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Business Beat
4:41 pm
Wed July 25, 2012

Following the Arkansas River to track the drought

Water is low in the Arkansas River in Colorado this year, making the raft trip through Royal Gorge slower, and bumpier, than normal.
Frank Morris Harvest Public Media

This week on the show: Harvest Public Media’s Frank Morris follows the river to show the impact of this year’s drought.

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Business Beat
5:42 pm
Wed July 18, 2012

Keeping cows cool: serious stuff

The "Thermal Aid" app, on an iPhone.
Scott Pham KBIA

It’s going to seem like this week’s show is all about keeping cows cool, and it kind of is, but keep in mind this is a serious threat to agriculture in Missouri, and thus, the overall economy in the state.

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Business Beat
6:27 pm
Wed July 11, 2012

New app aims to help connect Columbia Transit, riders

A screenshot from Columbia Transit, a new iPhone app for the Columbia bus system.
Dave Oster Rockupied

This week: an app may help the Columbia Transit system deal with an unengaged ridership. Plus, Harvest Public Media looks at the lasting impact of the Homestead Act.

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Business Beat
4:16 pm
Wed July 4, 2012

Flying overseas - to look at wheat?

Tunde Adebayo, an executive with a Nigerian flour mill, traced the path of U.S. wheat exports on a recent tour of the Midwest.
Jeremy Bernfeld Harvest Public Media

Visits from foreign buyers play a role in sustaining certain agriculture markets in the Midwest. Plus, educators, designers and engineers team up to try to fund the next big innovation for small farms.

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Business Beat
5:23 pm
Wed June 27, 2012

You've heard of ethanol, but what about enzymes?

A fermentation tank
Grant Gerlock for Harvest Public Media

This week on the show: an enzyme factory aims to be a big part of the ethanol industry, and a business incubator in Columbia lands a state tax credit.

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