U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)

10:17am

Fri February 22, 2013
The Two-Way

Dead Mice Are Going To Be Dropped On Guam From Helicopters (Really)

Originally published on Fri February 22, 2013 1:38 pm

Orlando Getty Images

Here's the latest plan scientists have come up with to kill some of the estimated 2 million brown tree snakes that have wiped out many other animals on Guam:

In April or May they're going to lace dead mice with painkillers, attach them to little parachutes, drop them from helicopters and hope that they get snagged in the jungle foliage. Then, if all goes well, the snakes — which as their name implies hang out in trees — will eat the mice and die from ingesting the painkillers' active ingredients.

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8:58am

Tue February 19, 2013
The Salt

Pictures Don't Lie: Corn And Soybeans Are Conquering U.S. Grasslands

Originally published on Tue February 19, 2013 11:56 am

A corn field is shrouded in mist at sunrise in rural Springfield, Neb.
Nati Harnik AP

For years, I've been hearing stories about the changing agricultural landscape of the northern plains. Grasslands are disappearing, farmers told me. They're being replaced by fields of corn and soybeans.

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5:00am

Fri February 8, 2013
Agriculture

Modernizing Poultry Inspection Is No Easy Matter

Retired federal chicken inspector Phyllis McKelvey worked with Change.org and Whistleblower.org to gather signatures on a petition opposing the proposed new poultry slaughter rule. She delivered over 177,000 signatures to the USDA.
Whistleblower.org

Retired federal inspector Phyllis McKelvey spent 44 years looking for blemishes and other defects on chicken carcasses. She started as an inspector’s helper, worked her way up, and in 1998, became part of a U.S. Department of Agriculture trial.

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8:48am

Tue February 5, 2013
The Salt

Why Health Officials Want You To Eat More Potassium

Originally published on Tue February 5, 2013 10:32 am

It's a real bummer to be told to eat less of something. Especially when it's salt, the ubiquitous ingredient that seems to make everything taste a little better.

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3:45pm

Fri February 1, 2013
The Salt

Carrot Juice Instead of Coke? USDA Proposes New School Snack Rules

Originally published on Wed February 6, 2013 8:24 am

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's proposed new rules for school snacks promote healthier options, like the fruits and vegetables served in this Palo Alto, Calif., cafeteria.
Paul Sakuma AP

The Department of Agriculture has proposed a new "Smart Snacks in School" rule that aims to promote more healthful options in school vending machines, snack bars and cafeterias across the country.

The USDA's updated regulations, which are open to public comment for 60 days, will set nutrition standards and calorie limits for snack foods that are sold in schools.

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