Agriculture

Harry Hall, Campbell's chief agricultural expert, inspects tomatoes in his office at Campbell's research farm in Cinnaminson, New Jersey sometime in the 1920s.

How Campbell Soup Turned New Jersey Into a Tomato-Growing State

The canned food company's tomato breeding program was responsible for developing several important varieties

Archaeologists discovered a ceramic colander near grain silos at a dig in Israel, suggesting evidence of beer consumption in social gatherings about 7,000 years ago. 

Beer Flowed Freely at Gatherings in the Jordan Valley 7,000 Years Ago

Researchers find evidence that prehistoric communities consumed the alcoholic beverage during social events

Orange and lemon groves as well as the residence of the citrus pioneer William Wolfskill, c. 1882. 

The Bug That Saved California

The Golden State’s citrus industry faced a lethal threat. The solution would herald a new kind of pest control

"As soon as this idea of aerial application for farming began to take shape, nearly everyone agreed this was the way to go,” says Dorothy Cochrane, curator at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum, where one of only two known to exist, is on view.

The Little 'Puffer' That Could, and Did, Change an Industry

The Huff-Daland Duster ushered in the era of agriculture aviation

The naturally mummified remains were remarkably well preserved, with some still sporting clothing and hair.

Cool Finds

New Research Reveals Surprising Origins of Millennia-Old Mummies Found in China

Once thought to be migrants from West Asia, the deceased were actually direct descendants of a local Ice Age population, DNA analysis suggests

Coffee leaves cultured in laboratory conditions produced a brewed batch that smelled and tasted like the real deal.

Lab-Grown Coffee Passes Taste Test

Finnish researchers brew batch using a bioreactor for a more sustainable, climate-conserving java crop

During the 2017 Grocery Walk, more than 500 protestors demanded greater investment in food access programs and healthy food retail options in a local Washington D.C. community.

In a City Flush With Power and Wealth, D.C.'s Ward 8 Faces Food Inequity

Eleven percent of U.S. households experience hunger; an expansive, new exhibition focuses how a local community manages this national problem

Enticed by a sweet treat, a cow learns to use the "MooLoo," a latrine for cattle, where excrement can be collected. The only question is: can this technique work on a larger scale?

Researchers Potty Trained Young Cows, a Promising Measure to Reduce Greenhouse Gases

One cow pees up to eight gallons a day; training them is easy, and capturing and treating the waste could make a difference

Can a machine be taught to understand the plant world?

Innovation for Good

Is This Weed-Spotting, Yield-Predicting Rover the Future of Farming?

The robot, developed by Alphabet Inc.'s X, will make its public debut at the Smithsonian

Once fall armyworms attack, lawns can go from green to brown in less than 48 hours.

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Fall Armyworms Are Attacking Lawns and Crops on 'Unprecedented' Scale

These bug battalions turn grass yards from green to brown in less than 48 hours

Scientists recreated the famous beef, which is prized for its fat marbling, or sashi.

Innovation for Good

Scientists Create First 3-D Printed Wagyu Beef

The cultured cut matches the texture and marbling of the famous Japanese meat

If you see this bug, officials want you to kill it. The spotted lanternfly is an invasive insect that can cause millions of dollars in damage to crops and forests.

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See a Spotted Lanternfly? Squash It, Officials Say

The invasive insect poses a huge threat to agriculture and trees in the Northeast United States

A historic drought has choked the state’s water supply and threatened future almond production.

California Drought Hits World's Top Almond Producer

Extreme heat and a limited water supply are jeopardizing the future of the $6 billion industry

Fixed up to look like "Dusty," the Disney animated aircraft that had high-flying aspirations, the Air Tractor AT-301/400A became a hit at air-shows following the success of the first film and its 2014 sequel Planes: Fire and Rescue.

Disney's Dusty Crophopper—the Little Airplane that Could—Comes to the Smithsonian

Iconic Air Tractor aircraft on display at the Udvar-Hazy Center this Saturday

The Dixie Fire was named California's second largest fire, and it is still only 21 percent contained as of this week.

Major Climate Change Report Warns of 'Code Red for Humanity'

Weather disasters are 'going to get worse' unless countries act now to lower emissions

Pork producers are challenging the law in Iowa, where a third of the country’s hogs are raised, claiming it will cost “tens of millions of dollars” annually to meet the requirements.

New Animal Welfare Law Could Drive Up Pork Prices in California—and Nationwide

In 2018, Californians overwhelmingly supported Proposition 12, an initiative designed to create humane conditions for farm animals

The fungus Hemileia vastatrix strikes a plant on a coffee farm in Aquires, Costa Rica.

New Study Shows Climate Change May Increase the Spread of Plant Pathogens

Models suggest that higher latitude crops will experience higher infection rates and a greater number of threats

Researchers say that wild plants that gave rise to today’s three lineages of cannabis grew in present-day China.

New Study Suggests Cannabis' Wild Ancestors Likely Came from China

The analysis identifies East Asia as a potential source of genetic diversity for the growing market for medical and recreational marijuana

A dwarf cow named Rani stands next to a more normal sized cow on a farm in Bangladesh.

This 20-Inch-Tall Cow Could Be the World's Smallest Ever

Meet Rani, a pint-size bovine in Bangladesh, who has drawn thousands of adoring fans to her farm

Custard apple trees—a freshwater version of mangroves once ringed Lake Okeechobee’s southern shore in a three-mile-wide belt. Today, barely 100 acres remain.

The Strange Beauty at the Edge of the Everglades

Chronicling the historic struggles of the Florida farming community known as Belle Glade

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