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Ohio Farm Bureau

Ty Higgins / Ohio Farm Bureau

The Ohio Farm Bureau is taking steps to prepare Ohio farmers to grow their first crop of hemp next spring now that Gov. Mike DeWine signed a law legalizing it.

Vape cartridges are on display durIng the CBD Express store grand opening in Salem, Ore.
Timothy J. Gonzalez / Associated Press

Gov. Mike DeWine has signed a bill that allows the cultivation of industrial hemp in Ohio and legalizes the manufacturing and sale of CBD products.

American soil.

Those are two words that are commonly used to stir up patriotic feelings. They are also words that can't be taken for granted, because today nearly 30 million acres of U.S. farmland are held by foreign investors. That number has doubled in the past two decades, which is raising alarm bells in farming communities.

Adam Kocher cuts open a bale of fermented hay, which they grow to feed cows.
Olivia Miltner / WOSU

The Kocher family has been farming the same plat of land near the northern Ohio village of Bloomville for generations. Among other crops, they grow alfalfa hay to feed their 700 dairy cows.

A new investigation by two environmental groups cites unpermitted livestock farms as contributors to the algae problem in Lake Erie. The Environmental Working Group and Environmental Law & Policy Center collected and studied aerial photos of the Maumee River watershed.

President Trump is threatening to close the U.S.-Mexico border in response to a recent surge of people crossing illegally. In speaking to reporters about the proposal this past weekend, he said a shutdown could include “all trade.” 

Such a move would have a significant impact on Ohio, which has Mexico as its second-largest trading partner after Canada. 

Gov. Mike DeWine says it’s time for the state to do more to protect what he calls the jewel of Ohio -- Lake Erie. Those efforts will likely include working with farmers to deal with runoff.

Ohio Farmers Brace For Escalating Trade War

Aug 9, 2018
tractor in farm field
Jean Beaufort / Public Domain Pictures

The trade war that's already squeezing Ohio farmers is ratcheting up another notch.

In response to the Trump administration announcing $16 billion in new tariffs against China on Tuesday, Chinese trade officials on Wednesday promised to retaliate with their own tariffs.

tractor in farm field
Jean Beaufort / Public Domain Pictures

The timing of Gov. John Kasich’s executive order for more urgent protection of Lake Erie from agricultural runoff may be especially bad for Ohio farmers.

Aerial Associates Photography, Inc. by Zachary Haslic / NOAA

The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency is asking for broad public input on its plan to have the open waters of western Lake Erie declared impaired under the federal Clean Water Act.  And a leading group opposed to the state agency’s decision is encouraging its supporters to offer feedback, too.

A docked boat is reflected in the algae-covered water of Lake Erie's Maumee Bay in Oregon, Ohio in this Sept. 15, 2017, file photo.
Paul Sancya / Associated Press

The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency is asking the General Assembly to expand the power of state regulators over a specific source of water pollution affecting Lake Erie.

Brian Johnson and Dane Brian / Flickr

Ohio farmers are pushing back against the Trump administration after China made good on promises to respond to recent U.S. tariffs with tariffs of its own.

Farming is an industry worth more than $100 billion in Ohio. But all the rain this summer means farmers weren't able to plant all their corn and soybean fields. And what seeds were planted are being drowned.