Arkansas Agriculture officials are expanding a quarantine area to protect against the spread of an invasive beetle but say mass devastation of the state’s ash trees may only be a matter of time. Eight more Arkansas counties, including Pulaski, were added to the state’s quarantine list this week. The number of counties under quarantine is now at 21. Another 12 counties have confirmed sightings of the Emerald Ash Borer.


Tyson Foods is recalling over 132 thousand pounds of fully cooked chicken nuggets that may be contaminated with hard plastic.  According to a news release from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Panko Chicken Nuggets were produced July 18th.  The packages of chicken nuggets being recalled are a five-pound bag of Tyson’s fully cooked Panko chicken nuggets and the 20-pound bags of Spare Time fully cooked Panko chicken nuggets.  The problem was discovered after complaints were reported to the USDA. There are no confirmed reports of adverse reactions due to consumption of the nuggets.

Arkansas Businesses Ready To Trade With Cuba As Restrictions Lifted

Sep 23, 2016

Candlemaker Burt Hanna, rice and grain operators and even an oil importer in Arkansas are ready to do business with Cuba, held back only by an embargo rendered 56 years ago that has only served to help impoverish a neighboring nation, according to Melvin Torres.

Graham Senor

With the recent bombings in New York and New Jersey, Conner Eldridge, Democratic challenger to U.S. Senator John Boozman, discusses with KASU's Johnathan Reaves how congress should address national security and Arkansas' roles in keeping America safe.  Also discussed in this congressional interview:

The German pharmaceutical and chemical giant Bayer says it will buy U.S. seed seller Monsanto for $66 billion in an all-cash deal that will create the world's largest supplier of seeds and agricultural chemicals.

Jonesboro's Madison Gibson named Miss Arkansas Rice

Aug 29, 2016
Arkansas Farm Bureau

Madison Gibson of Jonesboro (Craighead County) was named 2016-17 Miss Arkansas Rice on Saturday at the Brinkley Convention Center. Gibson is a junior at Jonesboro High School and is the daughter of Scott and Karie Gibson.


Plans to place an agricultural school in Weiner continue to move forward.   The Sun newspaper reports that residents are working with the Arkansas Department of Education, the Department of Career Tech Education and the attorney general’s office to see how recently passed bills could apply to the school. 

Mark Smith

U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) visited the KASU studios for this month's talk with KASU's Johnathan Reaves. The Senator discussed his annual Agriculture Tour, as well as the latest challenges to Obamacare and other issues. Click on the Listen link to hear the entire interview.

When agricultural extension agent Tom Barber drives the country roads of eastern Arkansas this summer, his trained eye can spot the damage: soybean leaves contorted into cup-like shapes.

He's seeing it in field after field. Similar damage is turning up in Tennessee and in the "boot-heel" region of Missouri. Tens of thousands of acres are affected.

Jonesboro Officials Still Pushing to Build $12 millon Shooting Range

Jul 21, 2016
Johnathan Reaves, KASU News

The city of Jonesboro and the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission are hoping to build a state of the art, $12 million shooting range, and could recoup some of the cost by charging the public to use the range.

US Food and Drug Administration

Various sunflower and tree nut products have been recalled because of Listeria.   

SunOpta announced it was recalling their Sunflower kernel products.  SunOpta produces Planters Sunflower Kernels.  The recall affects products with the best by dates between ‘3/6/2017’ and ‘3/8/2017’ (UPC: 029000012714). 


The United States continues to work with other countries in ironing out the details of the Trans-Pacific  Partnership agreement.  On Monday,  Tom Vilsack,  U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, met with agricultural leaders in Vietnam to discuss the agreement.  

Vietnam is one of 12 countries involved with the TPP and is considered as one of the fastest growing agricultural markets for the U.S.  Some of the top products for the Vietnam market are grown in Arkansas, such as cotton, rice, and soybeans.  

Courtesy boozman.senate.gov

U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR), in his monthly visit with KASU, talked about the candidates for President, international tensions, and meetings this week with the Jonesboro Chamber of Commerce and Arkansas veterans. Click on the Audio link to hear the entire interview.


Dealing with a downturn in the agricultural economy is the big topic of discussion at the third annual Agricultural and Environmental Law Conference.

Conference spokesman and National Agricultural Law Center Director Harrison Pittman says Mid-South agriculture is uniquely impacted by changes in state, federal, & international policies.  He says the goal is to bring awareness to how those changes affect the industry.

Brandon Tabor, KASU News

  U. S. Representative Rick Crawford (R-Jonesboro) has returned from his “fact-finding” mission to Cuba for his agricultural trade bill.  He shared his experience with Talk Business and Politics on their TV show over the weekend.  He said he was “pleasantly surprised” about his visit.


  In preparation to his upcoming trip to Cuba, U.S. Representative Rick Crawford educated listeners on how the embargo affects Arkansas in his “Tune In” web series.

Crawford asks one simple question:  “who are we really punishing with the embargo?”

He said unlike other countries like China the embargo in Cuba has helped the Castro Regime make the case that America was the “bad guy"--a dynamic he says lawmakers are trying to change to improve relations with the country. 

Crawford Delivers Cuba Bill Update at Agri Roundtable

Mar 23, 2016

U. S. Representative Rick Crawford told state agricultural leaders Tuesday his believes his Cuba bill could get passed sometime next year. 

Talk Business and Politics reports the Jonesboro Republican addressed participants via Skype at the Cuba Consortium Agriculture and Food Roundtable.

Crawford said his bill could also be moved as a stand-alone bill after the November elections during the lame duck session. 

  Farm Bill regulations, women in agriculture, and conservation are some of the topics to be discussed at the 2016 Arkansas Rice Meeting Friday.  KAIT-TV reports Congressman Rick Crawford and Arkansas Secretary of Agriculture Wes Ward will be speaking at the annual conference.  Arkansas is the highest ranking rice producing state accounting for more than 50% of the US’s rice production in 2014.  The meeting will be held at the Arkansas State University Con

Crawford hosts Agri-Tech forum

Oct 15, 2015

From our content partner Talk Business & Politics:

Economic development can go hand in hand with agriculture serving as a key part of the region’s future, several farm capital business owners said Wednesday (Oct. 14).

U.S. Rep. Rick Crawford, R-Jonesboro, hosted the 1st annual Agri-Tech Symposium in the auditorium of the ASU Convocation Center. At least 40 people heard about agriculture and what role investment can play in the industry.

US Representative Rick Crawford has filed a bill that is designed to make it easier for Cuba to purchase agricultural products from Arkansas.  The Republican from Jonesboro introduced the Cuba Agricultural Exports Act yesterday.  The bill would provide new economic opportunities and jobs for America’s agriculture industry by making it easier to trade with Cuba.  Crawford says current financial and marketing restrictions make it very hard to do business in the communist nation.  The Cuba Agricultural Exports Act would release those restrictions and give farmers access to marketing programs t

Gov. Asa Hutchinson and a delegation of nearly 50 Arkansas business leaders and state officials are in Cuba for a series of meetings with government officials.

The communist island nation and its 11 million residents have for years been eyed as an untapped marketplace for Arkansas products, especially agriculture. With diplomatic relations being restored between the U.S. and Cuba, Hutchinson said this was an ideal time to begin building a relationship. The visit is the first by an American governor since the U.S. re-opened its embassy there in July.

Gov. Hutchinson planning Cuba trade trip

Sep 3, 2015

Gov. Asa Hutchinson will be joining a group of Arkansas agricultural business interests on a trade trip to Cuba later this month.

The delegation is being led by the Rogers-based World Trade Center Arkansas and is expected to include representatives from Tyson Foods, Riceland Foods and other in-state agri-related businesses. The dates of the trip are Sept. 28-30.

U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) talked about the proposed nuclear deal with Iran, the battle against the self-proclaimed Islamic State, and the conflict in Yemen, as well as veterans issues and trade potential with Cuba, all in this month's visit with KASU. Click on the "Listen" link to hear the interview.

Arkansas farmers meet with Arkansas' Congressional Delegation

Feb 26, 2015
Arkansas Rice Federation

Farmers, merchants and millers from the Arkansas Rice Federation met Wednesday with all six members of the state's congressional delegation during the USA Rice Federation's Government Affairs Conference. They discussed with Senators Boozman and Cotton, and Representatives Crawford, Hill, Westerman and Womack, the implementation of the new farm bill and international trade, particularly with regard to rice markets in Cuba and Iraq.


Pryor on budget, sequester cuts

Mar 14, 2013

U.S. Senator Mark Pryor (D-AR) discussed budget issues, the impact of sequestration, and more in his monthly visit with KASU. Click on the "Listen" link to hear the entire interview.