Daily VideoDecember 10, 2009
Iowa Farmers Squeezed by Recession
In this video report from Sioux Center, Iowa, NewsHour correspondent Ray Suarez looks at how the recession has hit agricultural centers and the farmers that produce the food that feeds the country and the world.
Over 95 percent of the land in Sioux Center is used for agriculture and more than one in six jobs is tied to the industry.
Until recently, grain farmers had been faring well during the recession and they were able to save up during the good times. But with the price of corn plunging 46 percent in the last year, and consumers spending less money on food, farmers are finding that they have to tighten their budgets too.
“This community is fairly optimistic. You may find people in different parts of the country a little bit more pessimistic, but people here are pretty much, will hunker down, as they say out here in the West, and get through the tough times. ” – John Hansen, Farmers Cooperative Society
“We’re real fortunate in this community to — to have had the cash to — to do a lot of things that other communities can’t do. We have always believed what our mother says. You have got to put a little bit away for a rainy day.” – Dennis Walstra, mayor, Sioux Center, Iowa
Warm Up Questions
1. What kind of community do you live in? Where do people work? What kinds of jobs are available?
2. What is agriculture?
3. What kinds of crops and food products are produced in the U.S. What areas do they come from?
1. What did you learn from this video? Did any of the information surprise you?
2. What are the similarities between your community and agricultural town of Sioux Center, Iowa? What are the differences?
3. According to the video, how are the farmers impacted by external factors like the economy, the weather and even swine flu?
Tooltip of related stories
Tooltip of more video block
Submit Your Student Voice
Schools in Baltimore, Maryland are experimenting with meditation as a way to help students deal with stress and trauma. Continue readingArts & CultureEconomicsHealthScienceU.S.UncategorizedWorld
February 19, 2017, marked the 75th anniversary of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s controversial executive order, which allowed the government to incarcerate Japanese Americans after the attack on Pearl Harbor in World War II. Continue readingArts & CultureEconomicsHealthScienceU.S.UncategorizedWorld
Dozens of cities throughout the United States have been deemed “sanctuary cities,” where local governments resist cooperating with federal immigration officials, including handing over undocumented immigrants who have may committed very minor offenses. Continue readingArts & CultureEconomicsHealthScienceU.S.UncategorizedWorld
In order to address the homelessness problem facing students, a school district in Kansas City, Kansas, with over 1,000 homeless students, partnered with Avenue of Life, a nonprofit organization that brings students out of homelessness by supporting the entire family. Continue readingArts & CultureEconomicsHealthScienceU.S.UncategorizedWorld
In places where violent conflict makes it difficult for human rights investigators to observe, social media platforms now make it possible to document abuses.Arts & CultureEconomicsHealthScienceU.S.UncategorizedWorld