Michigan Food & Agriculture

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Bovine Tuberculosis
1:22 pm
Thu September 11, 2014

Northern Michigan counties free of bovine tuberculosis

The U.S. Department of Agriculture says seven counties in the region are now free from bovine tuberculosis – an area including Antrim, Charlevoix, and Emmet Counties.

That means federal officials are easing regulations on cattle farmers, who have had to test their cattle regularly for nearly 20 years. Infected herds have been destroyed.

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Labor
1:30 pm
Tue September 2, 2014

Michigan’s minimum wage rises to $8.15 an hour

People making the minimum wage in Michigan got a raise Monday. The wage increased from $7.40 an hour to $8.15 an hour.

It will eventually rise to $9.25 an hour by 2018 and increase with inflation after that. That stops if the state’s unemployment rate goes above 8.5 percent.

The Michigan Restaurant Association (MRA), which lobbied against the minimum wage increase, says it expects some restaurants will raise menu prices because of Monday’s increase.

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Stateside
5:12 pm
Tue August 26, 2014

The cold winter helped bring in a big apple crop in Michigan

While we were begging for winter to end, the Michigan Apple Committee was happy for the cold temperatures.

As a result, the 2014 Michigan apple crop is expected to be 28.74 million bushels. That’s about 435 million apple pies.

Diane Smith, executive Director of the Michigan Apple Committee, said that apple trees like the cold winter. The past lengthy winter allowed for the trees to stay dormant, and not wake too early before the spring.

“The apples look beautiful, there aren't any issues, and everything’s coming along the right way,” Said Smith.

*Listen to the full interview with Diane Smith above. 

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Michigan Food & Agriculture
10:59 am
Tue August 19, 2014

The growth of the gourmet food truck industry is charted in new UM study

It's estimated there are about four thousand ‘gourmet’ food trucks, in U.S. cities with more than 100,000 residents.
Credit Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Gourmet food trucks have seen remarkable growth in recent years.

A new University of Michigan study looks at the phenomena.

Researcher Todd Schifeling is a doctoral candidate in sociology at UM.  He’s also a big fan of food trucks. In fact, he says he was spending so much time eating at his local food truck, he thought he might as well get some research done at the same time.

Schifeling says gourmet food trucks tend to grow in communities with active locally grown food scenes and more than the average number of college graduates.

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Stateside
4:13 pm
Wed August 6, 2014

You can thank an MSU professor for your favorite blueberry varieties

Originally published on Wed August 6, 2014 7:52 pm

“The great thing about blueberries is you can pick them, you can freeze them, you know, without a whole lot of preparation, and just pour them on stuff,” says James Hancock, professor of Horticulture at Michigan State University.

If you haven’t guessed, Hancock has a passion for blueberries. In fact, he has spent the last 30 years cultivating the berry.

The blueberry industry in Michigan has been commercially growing berries since the 1900s. In 2011, the Michigan blueberry industry spanned 18,000 acres and yielded 72 million pounds of fruit valued at more than $118 million.

Hancock has developed three of the most widely planted blueberry varieties throughout his three decades at MSU. He breeds high bush blueberries: the Aurora, the Draper, and the Liberty blueberry.

Hancock said his blueberries are not genetically modified. Some are grown as far away as Chile and South Korea.

*Listen to the full story above. 

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