APHIS Celebrates 50 Years and Ag Economy Barometer Dips
**USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is celebrating 50 years of serving the public as a federal agency.
USDA created APHIS in April, 1972, to consolidate animal health, plant health, and inspection duties under one roof.
The new agency focused on protecting American agriculture and natural resources, along with ensuring the humane care of certain animals.
**American Farmland Trust announced that over 200 farmers would be receiving grants of up to $5,000 each through the Brighter Future Fund, and its regional subsidiaries.
The grants will be used to help improve farm viability, enable farmers to access, transfer or permanently protect farmland or adopt regenerative agricultural practices.
Since 2020, AFT has provided approximately $3.5 million in grants to more than 2,000 farmers for pandemic relief, increased resilience, land access and enhanced viability.
**The Purdue University-CME Group Ag Economy Barometer dipped to a reading of 113 in March, the weakest farmer sentiment reading since May 2020, the early days of the pandemic.
The March reading was 12 points lower than February and 36% lower than March of last year.
Compared to a year earlier, producers' appraisal of current conditions was down 44%, while their expectations for the future fell 31%.
Thanks largely to higher input costs, producers expect their
farm's financial performance to decline in 2022.