Broadband Briefing: LightSquared vs GPS

Cross-posted from Blandin on Broadband blog, originally prepared for Southwest Regional Development Commission. LightSquared vs. GPS A new wireless start-up with Minnesota connections has been in the news lately with plans to provide a unique wireless-satellite communications network that could bring ubiquitous broadband coverage to rural America for a fraction of the cost of existing, […]

The Junk Science of Ethanol-Food Price Pressure

With harvest wrapping up here in the Upper Midwest, I wanted to share this Op-Ed from Iowa’s Secretary of Agriculture, Republican Bill Northey. It came out last spring, but is still timely this fall. Rising Food Prices: Don’t Blame Ethanol By Bill Northey, Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Food prices are rising here in the United […]

Dairy Goodness at the Murray County Fair

Today is the opening of the 2011 Murray County Fair.  The booths are going up.  The 4-H kids are showing their kids (and bunnies and horses and hogs).  The Milk Producers have the Dairy stand turning out chocolate (and raspberry and strawberry) shakes malts and the Pork Producers have the Pork stand turning out pulled pork sandwiches and […]

Food Check-Out Week Benefits Local Food Shelf, and many others

The Cottonwood County, Minnesota, Farm Bureau is teaming up with the local Hy-Vee grocery store in Windom, MN, for a bit of food fun benefiting the local food shelf.  The Cottonwood County Citizen reports: At 10 a.m. [Monday], teams from Citizen Publishing and KDOM Radio will be on a two-minute dash through the aisles of […]

Grassroots Engagement With Social Media

During a fast-paced presentation, rancher Jeff Fowle and organic dairy farmer Emily Zweber outlined how they have used social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter, blogs, YouTube and LinkedIn to connect with non-farmers. Both strongly emphasized the importance of the “human element” and the need to be genuine when using social media or else any attempts are destined to fail….

Over-regulation: "a clear and present danger"?

The Red River Farm Network weekly newsletter highlights some of their coverage from the American Farm Bureau Federation Annual Meeting in Atlanta this week. I’m a local Farm Bureau member, not because I farm, but because I live in a community that depends on agriculture and I appreciate the democratic process that the Farm Bureau […]

Buy Ag Land? They ain't making any more of it

An interesting news bit from the Red River Farm Network‘s FarmNetNews newsletter: Land Values Called Unbelievable — The Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City says farmland values in the Plains increased in the third quarter due to generally rising farm incomes and robust demand for land. Murray Wise, with Murray Wise Associates, sells farmland. “The […]

Rural Broadband: Jobs and Services

Written Remarks for Presentation to Murray County (MN) Farm Bureau, 27 July 2010 Just five years ago, most Americans accessed the internet on dial-up modems.  Today, about 2/3 of the nation uses broadband service—high speed internet that lets you download and upload photos and video and use specialized applications as well as surfing the web. […]

More on '08 Income Growth

Short note:  The Daily Yonder today (“2008 Incomes Surged in Farm Counties“) picks up on the BEA personal income figures I wrote about 2 weeks ago (“PCI UP IN SW MN“) when they were released. Of the fastest growing 400 counties, 364 were rural. As you can see in the map above, most of the counties with […]