Ongoing Coverage:

harvest public media

Agriculture
5:36 pm
Wed July 18, 2012

Heat stress? Now there's a cow app for that

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

When a cow is stressed from the heat, it affects a producer’s bottom line. The animal eats less, meaning less mass in beef cattle. For dairy farmers, the hurt comes in the form of a 10 to 20 percent loss in milk. Researchers at the University of Missouri think we can change this trend by putting information in the hands of producers. They’ve built a tool that can detect the threat of heat stress in specific animals before it starts.

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Agriculture
5:15 pm
Wed July 18, 2012

Hoop barns becoming more common in Midwest

Brent Bryant, managing director of Beef Hoop Systems, keeps cattle under a hoop barn at his company's research farm
Rick Frederickson for Harvest Public Media

Crops are not the only things wilting in the sweltering summer of 2012; cattle, the largest animals, on the farm are also under stress.

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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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Agriculture
5:53 pm
Wed July 11, 2012

The lasting heritage of the Homestead Act

Kendall Hodgson, left, and Ed Hodgson, first cousins, in front of the Hodgson homestead near Little River, Kan.
Peggy Lowe Harvest Public Media

LITTLE RIVER, Kan. – Before this town was here, before the railroads were here, before a post office was here, the Hodgsons were here.

In 1871, Hannah and Henry Clay Hodgson moved into a one-room dugout on the banks of the Little Arkansas, their view an Indian camp on the other side of the river. They arrived in central Kansas in November, in the midst of a blizzard, and it took them three days from the train stop in Salina to get the 60 miles south to this outpost.

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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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Agriculture
12:05 pm
Wed July 4, 2012

Farmers + Engineers = Farm Hack

Carolyn Scherf, a farmhand from the Iowa City-area; Troy Washam, co-owner of a small farm near DeWitt, Iowa; and Grant Schultz, co-director of Farm Hack Iowa, stand in the University of Iowa Garden at the conclusion of the first Midwestern Farm Hack.
Clare Roth Harvest Public Media

"Hack” isn’t a word usually associated with agriculture, but that might be starting to change. A group of small farmers across the country has started to come together to pool their ideas for solutions to small-farming challenges, just like computer hackers working together to solve computer issues. They call it Farm Hack.

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Under the Microscope
7:11 pm
Thu June 28, 2012

Managing the Missouri River

Soybeans planted in previously flooded areas near the Missouri River in Atchison County, Mo., poke up through the silt.
Clay Masters Harvest Public Media

This week, we’ll hear about efforts to manage the Missouri River.

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Science, Health and Technology
7:06 pm
Thu June 28, 2012

Control of Missouri River divides communities

Jim Redmond, with the Northwest Iowa Sierra Club, stands along the Missouri River in Sioux City, Iowa. Redmond said the river could handle the rainfall of the 2011 flood, but not when it’s cutoff from the flood plain.
Clay Masters Harvest Public Media

Along a vast stretch of the Missouri River, the floodwaters that ravished homes, businesses and farms last year are not a distant memory.

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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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Agriculture
5:12 pm
Wed June 27, 2012

Enzyme factory mixes into ethanol's future

A vial of ethanol enzyme is displayed during the grand opening of the Novozymes laboratory in Blair, Neb.
Grant Gerlock NET

Inside a new facility in Blair, Neb., north of Omaha, a gleaming maze of steel tubes connect a line of giant fermentation tanks that will cultivate some of the most advanced biotechnology in the ethanol industry.

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Science, Health and Technology
4:41 pm
Thu June 14, 2012

Who are you calling a corporate farmer?

Chris Boeckmann grows turkeys for Cargill on his Loose Creek, Mo., farm. But he also raises grass-fed all-natural beef for his private label.
Peggy Lowe Harvest Public Media

A surprising thing happens while touring Chris Boeckmann’s turkey farm, where 50,000 birds are grown each year for Cargill Inc.

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Business Beat
5:52 pm
Wed June 13, 2012

Language and agriculture

Jamie Pudenz wants to own a cow-calf operation, but he's worried the current political climate will have adverse effects on production agriculture.
Sandhya Dirks Harvest Public Media

A war over words is part of a bigger struggle between agriculture interests and their critics. Plus, a national report looks at agriculture research grants from private corporations to land grant Universities, including MU.

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Harvest Public Media
4:40 pm
Wed June 13, 2012

Is the agriculture industry being bullied?

Jamie Pudenz wants to own a cow-calf operation, but he's worried the current political climate will have adverse effects on production agriculture.
Sandhya Dirks Harvest Public Media

There is a culture war raging in the heartland. It’s not about abortion or religion or gay marriage, it’s about how food is produced in this country.

As in any war, language is playing a big role. Take, for instance, the way Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad defended the beef product that came to be known as “pink slime.”

“It’s just tragic that people use smear language against products,” Branstad said. “We would never let people smear somebody because of who/what they look like, or their race, or their religion.”

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Under the Microscope
6:52 pm
Thu May 31, 2012

On robots and farms

This planting robot was the winner of a national competition. Three sensors allow it to determine where a field of crops ends.
Jeremy Bernfeld Harvest Public Media

On this week’s show, we’ll learn how robots could be used to assist farmers, and hear about an upcoming astronomical event involving Venus and the sun.

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Science, Health and Technology
6:35 pm
Thu May 31, 2012

Robots on the farm

Brent Ware, a member of the robotics team at Kansas State, stands next to a planting robot that won a national competition.
Jeremy Bernfeld Harvest Public Media

There’s always work to be done on the farm, but often it’s the same work day, after day, after day. Parts of the job must feel a bit like an assembly line.

While it’s impossible to automate farming like many manufacturers have automated their assembly lines, using robotic technology on the farm might not be so far off.

Farm robots in the classroom

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