Reporter | Agriculture

Adam Belz is the agriculture reporter for the Star Tribune. He previously spent one-and-a-half years reporting at Minneapolis City Hall and four years covering economics. Before that, he reported for the Des Moines Register and Cedar Rapids Gazette.

A native of Iowa, Belz lives in Minneapolis with his wife and their two young children. They spend a lot of time at playgrounds. In his free time, usually late at night, he watches soccer.


Glen Taylor-owned pork firm in Windom to merge with Canadian pork producer

Manitoba-based HyLife is one of Canada's largest producers.


Virus hit meat plants just as workers asked to speed up

Even as the outbreak began to force plants to temporarily close last month, the U.S. Department of Agriculture continued granting permission to chicken processors to boost speeds by 25% on production lines.


College seniors entering job market had a feast, now confront a famine

Three months ago they were facing an excellent job market; now 35 million Americans have been idled.


Corn prices keep slumping, and Minnesota farmers keep planting more

Farmers call it "plant and pray." With supply far outpacing demand, another huge corn crop is projected in 2020.


As virus loomed, Worthington pork plant refused to slow down

A week before JBS idled its Worthington pork plant, it was clear that meatpacking plants had become clusters of the virus. But until April 20, JBS was running the plant, which can slaughter as many as 21,000 hogs a day, at full tilt. JBS has made strides since shutting down, but workers say it was slow to react


Next to a vineyard in southwest Minnesota, a site for euthanized hogs

Tens of thousands of pigs have been euthanized in Minnesota in recent weeks thanks to the shutdowns of meatpacking plants after outbreaks of coronavirus among workers. The site where euthanized hogs are ground into compost in Nobles County is a wide open field across the road from a lakeside vineyard.


Testing uneven, or nonexistent, at meatpacking plants with COVID-19 outbreaks

The only guidance from the federal government has been that meat processors should "consider" tests.


Land O'Lakes opens Wi-Fi spots to help rural broadband access

The hotspots allow students to finish homework and sick people to connect with medical facilities in a time of crisis. More important, it is a step forward for communities, says CEO Beth Ford.


More than 300 USDA meat inspectors sidelined by coronavirus

Some 197 are positive for the virus and another 120 are under quarantine after exposure.


In Minnesota, 10,000 pigs are being euthanized a day

Millions of chickens have been euthanized, too, with turkeys likely to follow suit.