Agriculture Reporter | Agriculture

Vondracek has reported on prairie dog lawsuits in the Black Hills to federal education policy in Washington D.C. A native of Faribault County, Minnesota, he's a graduate of the University of South Dakota, holds an MFA from Hamline University, and taught college English for many years in Winona and St. Paul. His debut collection of poetry, Rattlesnake Summer, was published in 2020, and his memoir, Dancing with Welk, in 2022. He lives in Minneapolis with his wife, Carrie, and daughter, Rosie.

Don't let your summer garden investment die off; preserve produce to save money in winter

Preserving food rather than wasting it could save hundreds of billions of dollars in the U.S. each year.

Shutdown would hurt America's food supply, ag secretary says

In many states, the WIC food program for mothers and children could collapse after only a day or two.

In the Land of 10,000 Lakes, corn harvest will be diminished by drought, hot summer

Minnesota corn yields — including bushels-per-acre — have dramatically increased over the decades, but low rainfall will still lessen this year's harvest.

Immigrant family finds solace in independent Minnesota farm, but needs more markets

The southern Minnesota producers grow more beautiful produce than they know what to do with, a common problem for smallholder farmers.

Environmental groups sue EPA over water pollution from large livestock farms

They claim waste from the megafarms is contributing to a national clean water crisis.

America's largest water highway is in trouble, ominous for grain farmers

Sixty percent of America's grain flows down the Mississippi River. Last fall, traffic ground to a halt due to low water, causing concern for Minnesota farmers during harvest.

Weeks after Hastings Creamery closed, facility is lost in an overnight fire

Officials have not determined a cause for the fire, but have opened an investigation. Dakota County commissioner calls timing of blaze "oddly coincidental."

Minnesota-based Cargill to sell stake in Russian grain terminal

Agreement comes amid criticism of global food and ag giant for continuing to do business there following Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

Minnesota's CHS returns $730M to co-op owners, second-highest ever

Inver Grove Heights-based CHS, the nation's top farmer-owner agribusiness, is coming off its best year ever in 2022.

Minnesota meat processor fined $300K to settle child labor allegations

Tony Downs Foods in Madelia disputes the allegations that it employed eight teenagers, including a child as young as 13, to work at its meat plant.