Palmetto State Sees No Change in Drought Conditions

Thursday’s drought monitor for South Carolina remained the same as the previous several weeks with more than 97% of the state drought free, and about 2 2/3rds of the state in abnormally dry conditions.  Moisture from this week’s snow and rain will be reflected in the next release on February 6th.

North Carolina Sees No Change in latest Drought Monitor

In the latest drought monitor released for North Carolina on Thursday, as has been the case for the month of January, there has been no change in abnormally dry conditions for the state.  More than 94% of the state remains drought free, and about 5 ½ % of the state remains in abnormally dry conditions.  However, the concentration of this week’s snowfall was in the eastern and southeastern part of the state, so perhaps on the next release, the state will be drought free once again.  The commonwealth of Virginia is 100% drought free.

Winners of Ag Outlook Forum Student Program Announced

Thirty university students have been selected to attend USDA’s 2014 Agricultural Outlook Forum next month. Twenty juniors and seniors were chosen based on their essays on agriculture as a career. The remaining 10 are graduate students – selected for their response to the greatest challenge facing agriculture over the next five years. Simone Hairston, North Carolina A&T State University is one of the undergraduate students selected

Farm Bill Score Confirms 23-Billion in Cuts

According to the Congressional Budget Office score of the 2014 farm bill – the measure – including sequester – will yield a total of 23-billion dollars in cuts to program spending. This meets the goal set by the agriculture committee in 2011. The cuts to farm programs total 18.4-billion. Conservation programs are cut by 6.1-billion dollars and nutrition programs are cut by eight-billion. While that totals more than 23-billion – some of those savings were reinvested into priorities like energy, strengthening crop insurance, research and fruits and vegetable programs. So the bill reduces the deficit by 23-billion dollars.

Food and Science Writer Debunks Study that Touts Health Benefits of Organic Milk

A food and science writer for the Washington Post says a recent research paper may oversell the health benefits of organic milk. The study compared the kinds of fat in organic and conventional full-fat milk and concluded that consumers could help reduce or eliminate probable risk factors for a wide range of developmental and chronic health problems by drinking organic milk.

The reason was the quantity of omega-6 and omega-3 and the ratio between them. According to the research paper – decreasing omega-6 intake and increasing omega-3 comes with health benefits and drinking organic milk helps do that.


A native of the Texas Panhandle, Rhonda was born and raised on a cotton farm where she saw cotton farming evolve from ditch irrigation to center pivot irrigation and harvest trailers to modules. After graduating from Texas Tech University, she got her start in radio with KGNC News Talk 710 in Amarillo, Texas.