U.S. Research Lab Lets Livestock Suffer in Quest for Profit: This is a long investigative piece published by The New York Times this week, looking at the Meat Animal Research Center in Nebraska and alleging vast and unmitigated abuse of animals. "At a remote research center on the Nebraska plains, scientists are using surgery and breeding techniques to re-engineer the farm animal to fit the needs of the 21st-century meat industry. The potential benefits are huge: animals that produce more offspring, yield more meat and cost less to raise. There are, however, some complications."
Barns Are Painted Red Because of the Physics of Dying Stars: Got a red barn? You might like this read from the Smithsonian.
Organic Yield Gap Shrinking? This piece from the Genetic Literacy Project picks through a recent meta-analysis of organic and conventional crop yields. It's written with an opinion, but there's a lot of good science to sift through, too.
Congress Targets Regulatory Overreach: A full report on the new year in regulations, regulatory accountability, Congress, the President and more, all from one of my favorite policy reporters, Jacqui Fatka, at our sister publication, Farm Futures.
4 Benefits of the Seedstock Business: My colleague, Amanda Radke, over at Beef Daily put this list together this week, and it includes a link to a list of the top 100 seedstock bull producers in the country. I come from a purebred cattle family, too, and though southern Illinois is a titch different than the operations Amanda's been involved with, I love what she has to say here. And I wish every steer-showing kid in Illinois could understand how hybrid vigor works and what it takes to make it work.