This is the VOA Special English Agriculture Report.
Looking for some reading material about farming?
One place to look is the science magazine of the United States Department of Agriculture. The descriptions of work by the department's Agricultural Research Service can be complex. But the monthly magazine, called Agricultural Research, is generally easy to understand without having to be a scientist.
Subjects in January included how researchers in the state of Mississippi have identified tens of thousands of genes in catfish. The American industry in farm-raised catfish is worth billions of dollars. That includes processors, feed producers and other related industries. Learning the secrets of the catfish genome could lead to increased quality and production.
Paid subscriptions to Agricultural Research are available for printed copies. But an electronic version of the magazine is free of charge on the Internet. The easiest way to find the address is to do a search for the words "Agricultural Research magazine."
Many universities in the United States have agricultural extension services that provide information and advice. The Extension Service at Oregon State University, for example, has a new publication for small farms. This is available online for free at smallfarms.oregonstate.edu.
The Fruit Growers News is a monthly publication from the Great American Publishing Company of Sparta, Michigan. Growers get industry news along with advice and information from experts. Some of the articles can be read for free at fruitgrowersnews.com.
The Vegetable Growers News, a related publication at vegetablegrowersnews.com, also offers some of its material free on the Web.
And so does a business magazine from Great American Publishing called Spudman, Voice of the Potato Industry. It deals with new products and methods and tells about research. The Web site is spudman.com.
For almost one hundred twenty-five years, Grit was a newspaper produced in Pennsylvania. Now Grit is a colorful magazine out of Kansas. It deals with many subjects, from how to care for baby goats to how to choose the right tractor to drive around the farm. These are just two of the stories in the current Grit. Some articles can be read free of charge at grit.com.
And that's the VOA Special English Agriculture Report, written by Jerilyn Watson. Links to all of these publications can be found at voaspecialenglish.com. I'm Steve Ember.