Montana Public Radio

agriculture


A federal agency agreed to temporarily limit how and where it kills wildlife that threaten livestock in Montana. The U.S. Department of Agriculture reached the settlement in federal court with WildEarth Guardians May 14.


While economists warn of potential meat shortages in grocery stores this month, livestock producers are struggling to find ways of getting their animals to market for a fair price. Many ranchers in Montana are seeking out more local options and hoping for reforms in the industry. Yellowstone Public Radio’s Rachel Cramer shared her reporting with Nicky Ouellet.

Angela Hsieh / NPR

With mail-ballots for the upcoming June 2 primary election hitting mailboxes this Friday, candidates are taking advantage of online forums to get their message out to voters. This weekend, the Montana Farmers Union, Northern Plains Resource Council, Montana Cattlemen Association and the United States Cattlemen Association, hosted candidates for Montana’s lone U.S. House seat in a virtual debate. It focused on agriculture and rural issues.

MTPR's Corin Cates-Carney spoke with Yellowstone Public Radio's Nicky Ouellet about how the candidates tried to stand out from the pack.

The Democratic and Republican gubernatorial primary candidates debated virtually Saturday on agriculture and rural issues, each facing off against their respective party members.

The debate was hosted by the Montana Farmers Union, state and national cattlemen’s associations, and Northern Plains Resource Council.

Ranching can be an isolating profession in a good year. But the coronavirus pandemic has disrupted the few staples of social contact women ranchers rely on. A program led by a woman in Garfield County, Montana is forging new ways of connecting that will likely outlast the pandemic.

A landowner advocacy group in Montana filed a complaint this week against Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks saying that the department has not thoroughly explored the consequences of allowing free-roaming wild bison in the state.


The Montana Department of Agriculture received the green light late last week on its hemp plan after outlining how it would meet stricter federal regulations, including testing and sampling. Some farmers may experience more stringent regulations in 2021.

 

Regional economists say Montana farmers are in a good position to recover from setbacks caused by international trade tensions last year. This spring they’ll be watching to see if Mexico, Canada and China follow through with their promises, how commodity markets react and if the overall uncertainty over future trade relations starts to fade.

Herford cattle.
USDA

A Wyoming rancher was awarded nearly $340,000 last month after disputing wildlife managers’ initial offer to pay for several livestock killed by grizzlies and wolves. 

While the large payout is unusual, Montana ranchers say it’s calling attention to funding issues for livestock losses on this side of the border.

Brigitta Miranda-Freer
Courtesy of Brigitta Miranda-Freer

Imagine pulling out a new board game's instructions and discovering that the normally skinny pamphlet runs thousands of pages and spells out the rules of the game from soup to nuts. That's what an international trade agreement looks like: it's comprehensive, it's years in the making, and millions of people's livelihoods depend on it.

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