Peggy Lowe

Peggy Lowe joined Harvest Public Media in 2011, returning to the Midwest after 22 years as a journalist in Denver and Southern California. Most recently she was at The Orange County Register, where she was a multimedia producer and writer. In Denver she worked for The Associated Press, The Denver Post and the late, great Rocky Mountain News. She was on the Denver Post team that won the Pulitzer Prize for breaking news coverage of Columbine. Peggy was a Knight-Wallace Fellow at the University of Michigan in 2008-09. She is from O'Neill, the Irish Capital of Nebraska, and now lives in Kansas City. Based at KCUR, Peggy is the analyst for The Harvest Network and often reports for Harvest Public Media.

7:13pm

Wed May 14, 2014
Digital Life

In Kansas, Professors Must Now Watch What They Tweet

Originally published on Thu May 15, 2014 3:17 pm

The Kansas Board of Regents gave final approval Wednesday to a strict new policy on what employees may say on social media. Critics say the policy violates both the First Amendment and academic freedom, but school officials say providing faculty with more specific guidelines will actually bolster academic freedom on campus.

The controversial policy was triggered by an equally controversial tweet posted last September by David Guth, an associate journalism professor. Reacting to a lone gunman who killed 12 people at the Washington Navy Yard in Washington, D.C., he wrote:

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5:54pm

Thu October 17, 2013
Around the Nation

Nearly Two Years Later, A Controversial Rape Case Is Reviewed

Originally published on Thu October 17, 2013 9:55 pm

Daisy Coleman, now 16, looks at trophies and other awards she's won for beauty pageants, dancing and sports. She has attempted suicide at least twice since waking up in freezing temperatures on her doorstep.
Peggy Lowe KCUR

Nearly two years after allegations of a sexual assault rocked a small Missouri town, the case may be reopened.

A county prosecutor in Maryville, Mo., has requested that an independent attorney look at accusations of rape and other charges against two former high school athletes — despite his earlier decision to drop the case.

The Internet activist group Anonymous, which crusaded for another high-profile rape case, is taking credit for this turnaround.

The Events

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5:38pm

Fri August 9, 2013
The Salt

Did Tyson Ban Doping Cows With Zilmax To Boost Foreign Sales?

Originally published on Fri August 9, 2013 6:36 pm

A pen at a feedlot in central Kansas that houses 30,000 cattle. Feedlots are where cattle are "finished" before slaughter, often with the use of growth-promoting drugs like zilpaterol.
Peggy Lowe Harvest Public Media

Tyson Foods Inc. announced this week that it would soon suspend purchases of cattle that had been treated with a controversial drug, citing animal welfare concerns.

But many in the industry wonder if the real reason is the battle for sales in other countries, where certain drugs that make livestock grow faster are banned.

"I really do think this is more of a marketing ploy from Tyson to raise some awareness so they can garner some export business from our overseas export partners," says Dan Norcini, an independent commodities broker.

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5:56pm

Wed June 12, 2013
The Salt

As Drought Turns To Flood, Farmers Get 'Weather Whiplash'

Originally published on Wed June 12, 2013 6:20 pm

A central Illinois farmer plants corn seed into the evening in Farmingdale, Ill.
Seth Perlman AP

As Chris Webber checked the 40 acres of muddy field he wanted to plant on a recent morning, he worried about getting more rain, even as he worried about the lack of it.

"The drought is over at the moment," he says. "But in Missouri, we tend to say that in 10 days or two weeks, we can be in a drought again. That's how fast it can get back to dry."

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3:07am

Thu May 30, 2013
The Salt

Will Chinese Firm Bring Home The Bacon With Smithfield Deal?

Originally published on Thu May 30, 2013 9:38 am

Smithfield Foods, makers of ham products under a variety of brand names, is being purchased by Chinese food maker Shuanghui International for $4.72 billion.
AP

There were questions Wednesday about whether U.S. regulators will approve the takeover of Smithfield Foods Inc., the company that sells all-American hams, hot dogs and bacon, by China's Shuanghui International.

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4:42pm

Thu May 23, 2013
The Salt

Oprah Winfrey's Latest Venture Is Farming In Hawaii

Originally published on Wed May 29, 2013 3:48 pm

The June issue of The Oprah Magazine includes an article with details on Oprah Winfrey's new farm in Hawaii.
The Oprah Magazine

The local food movement has a powerful new poster girl.

More glowing than American Gothic, Oprah Winfrey and her pal, Bob Greene, appear on the cover of the June issue of The Oprah Magazine, standing in what looks to be a field of kale.

"Oprah's New Farm!" reads the headline splashed across the pair's checkered shirts. "How She's Growing Healthier — and You Can Too."

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3:43pm

Tue April 2, 2013
Around the Nation

In Missouri, Days Of Drought Send Caretakers To One 'Big Tree'

Originally published on Thu April 4, 2013 10:52 am

This bur oak, called "The Big Tree" by Missouri locals, has been around for centuries. When a drought hit the state last year, the community came together to offer help and water for the iconic tree.
Courtesy of Christopher Starbuck

The devastating drought in the Midwest last summer is a story often told by the numbers, with statistics on large crop failures, days without rain and thousands of parched acres.

This story is also about a tree — a bur oak in rural Columbia, Mo., that everyone calls "The Big Tree." Although it's survived all kinds of punishments during its 350 years on the prairie, last year's record drought was especially tough.

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3:33am

Wed January 23, 2013
The Salt

Farmers And Their Cooperative Settle Lawsuit On Fixing The Price Of Milk

Originally published on Wed January 23, 2013 9:01 am

This 5-foot plexiglass piece of art resembling a freshly poured glass of milk sits near the door at Dairy Farmers of America headquarters in Kansas City, Mo.
Peggy Lowe/Harvest Public Media

Farmers who had hoped to get some answers on why prices for their raw milk went into free fall a decade ago were disappointed Tuesday by the settlement of a case accusing Dairy Farmers of America Inc. of creating a milk monopoly in the Southeast.

Dairy farmers and industry observers had hoped for their day in court after years of delays in the large class-action suit. But the day before the trial was to start in federal court in Tennessee, DFA announced a $158.6 million deal, saying it didn't want to risk going to trial.

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3:25am

Thu June 28, 2012
The Salt

Unlike Chicken And Pork, Beef Still Begins With Small Family Ranches

Originally published on Thu June 28, 2012 7:47 pm

Barbara and Norman Roux stand in front of cattle pens on their farm outside of Moundridge, Kan., where she has raised cattle for nearly 70 years.
Peggy Lowe Harvest Public Media

In the chicken and pork industries, nearly every aspect of the animals' raising has long been controlled by just a handful of agriculture conglomerates. But the cattle industry is still populated by mom-and-pop operations, at least at the calf-raising level.

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