In the top pork producing states, many farmers are under contract with giant meatpackers like Tyson or Smithfield Foods. The packers actually own the pigs and pay the farmers to raise them. Nebraska is one of the last states to still prohibit meatpackers from owning livestock.
The Trans Pacific Partnership could boost the U.S. agriculture industry by $3 billion. Many farmers and ranchers stateside are eager to see tariffs in countries like Japan, which have been notoriously expensive export markets.
Plants are taking in more carbon dioxide during the growing season and giving off more carbon in the fall and winter. Recent research shows the massive corn crop in the Corn Belt may be contributing to that deeper breath.