Please browse our publications, listed in order of publish date (newest to oldest). If you would like to narrow the list by publication types, please click one of the menus on the left.


Ag quickCASTs - 2012-1-QC - April 2013

This one-page Ag quickCAST contains excerpted material from its companion CAST document, The Direct Relationship between Animal Health and Food Safety Outcomes.

Ag quickCASTs - 50-QC - April 2013

This one-page Ag quickCAST contains excerpted material from its companion CAST document (IP 50), Water and Land Issues Associated with Animal Agriculture: A U.S. Perspective. (IP50)

Issue Papers - IP51 - March 2013

Future food, fiber, and fuel demands will not be met by expanding cropland area; continued advances in nutrient use efficiency will moderate increased nutrient demand. With a growing population, dwindling arable land, and an increased demand for biofuels, the world cannot count on an expansion of harvested area to fill the demands of the world’s growing population. The use of genetics to improve crop productivity, promote soil conservation and management, and use nutrients efficiently is necessary. The key lies in supporting research and development in these areas. This CAST Issue Paper (IP 51) looks at the background leading to the current situation and addresses the resulting requirements as world food production develops during the next 40 years. The authors use data to analyze factors influencing crop production now and indications of what is to come, and they show how research regarding nutrient use, recovery, and recycling is crucial. Chair: David Zilberman, University of California -- Berkeley.  IP51,March 2013, 24 pp. FREE. Available online and in print (fee for shipping/handling).

Issue Paper 51 Rollout Presentation by Dr. Zilberman and Dr. Bruce Dale


Issue Papers - IP49-SPA - February 2013

Los herbicidas se desarrollaron durante el siglo XX para su uso con la labranza convencional con el fin de controlar malezas. Posteriormente, evolucionó la labranza de conservación (mínima), que permitió menor daño al suelo cuando se utilizaba con herbicidas. Sin embargo, las presiones de selección han tenido como resultado especies de malezas que se han adaptado para su supervivencia conjuntamente con la labranza. El gobierno de EEUU ha establecido diversos programas y políticas para ayudar a determinar la selección e implementación de programas de cultivos y conservación relacionados a herbicidas y labranza. Este artículo examina el impacto que ciertas prácticas de control de malezas han tenido en los objetivos de conservación del suelo y aborda formas de mitigar sus efectos negativos.
Presidente: David R. Shaw, Office of Research and Economic Development, (Oficina de Investigación y Desarrollo Económico) Mississippi State University, (Universidad Estatal de Misisipí), Mississippi State. IP49 SPA, February 2013, 16 pp. Gratuito. Disponible en línea e impreso (Cuota de envío y manejo). (IP 49 SPA)

CAST Commentaries - QTA2012-1 SPA - September 2012

La salud de los animales dentro del sistema de producción de alimentos repercute en muchos aspectos del sistema muy alejados de los propios animales. Para promover una alta productividad en la agricultura animal, los investigadores deben examinar la nutrición, los sistemas de gestión y las prácticas del cuidado de los animales, incluyendo el uso de antibióticos y vacunas. Este comentario analiza las presiones que existen para cambiar los métodos de cría del ganado, evidencia del impacto directo a la salud pública que se traduce en días de enfermedad, así como las buenas regulaciones del servicio de inocuidad e inspección. Los autores utilizan pruebas indirectas, diagramas y gráficos para presentar sus conclusiones acerca de las maneras en que los animales sanos tienen como resultado alimentos más seguros. Presidente: Dr. H. Scott Hurd, Universidad Estatal de Iowa, Ames. QTA2012-1 SPA, 12 pp. Mayo de 2012. DISPONIBLE ÚNICAMENTE EN LÍNEA.

Issue Papers - IP50 - August 2012

This paper (IP 50) addresses specific water and land concerns related to animal agriculture. The authors consider issues of water use and water quality associated with the livestock sector and the related environmental and economic impacts. The paper also includes a discussion of livestock land use, land degradation, land application of manure and manure-based composts, and deforestation related to farm policies.  This Issue Paper presents scientific data specific to North America (primarily the United States) and explains how and why these data compare with other parts of the world.  Additionally, it discusses how to reduce the environmental impact of livestock agriculture while preserving resources and quality of life. Chair: Kelly D. Zering, North Carolina State University, Raleigh. IP50, August 2012, 24 pp. FREE. Available online and in print (fee for shipping/handling).

CAST Commentaries - QTA2012-1 - May 2012

The health of the animals within the food animal production system impacts many aspects of the system far removed from the animals themselves. To promote high productivity in animal agriculture, researchers need to examine nutrition, management systems, and animal care practices including the use of antibiotics and vaccines. This Commentary looks at the pressures to change livestock rearing methods, evidence to support the direct public health impact on human illness days, and good safety and inspection service regulations.  The authors use indirect evidence, diagrams, and graphs to deliver their findings about the ways that healthy animals result in safer food.  Chair: Dr. H. Scott Hurd, Iowa State University, Ames. QTA2012-1, 12pp., May 2012. AVAILABLE ONLINE ONLY.

Special Publications - SP31 - March 2012

The Clean Water Act of 1987 states that the elimination of pollutant discharge into navigable water is a national goal. Agriculture has been identified repeatedly as a significant contributor of nonpoint source pollution to surface waters. Despite conservation efforts, water quality problems still exist; all agricultural states struggle with balancing productive landscapes and water quality. Legislation, potential regulations, or allocations of millions of dollars to change agricultural practices seem warranted only if we know stream water is favorably impacted by modified agricultural practices, and in which streams the greatest potential impact might be observed. Project Manager/Lead Author: Rick Cruse, Iowa Water Center, Ames, Iowa. SP31, March 2012, 42 pp. $18.00 U.S. (plus shipping). Quantity Discounts: Discounts are offered for purchases of 6+ copies of the same publication sent to a single address. Orders of 6 through 99 copies are discounted 25% from listed prices. Orders of 100 or more copies are discounted 35%.  Please contact the CAST office to place a discounted order.

Issue Papers - IP49 - February 2012

Herbicides were developed during the twentieth century to be used with conventional tillage for weed control. Conservation (or minimum) tillage subsequently evolved, which enabled less soil damage when used with herbicides. Selection pressure, however, has resulted in weed species that have made adaptations for survival in conjunction with tillage. The U.S. government has put several federal policies and programs in place that help determine the selection and implementation of crops and conservation programs in relation to herbicides and tillage. This Issue Paper (IP 49) examines the impact of certain weed management practices on soil conservation objectives and addresses ways to mitigate negative effects. Chair: David R. Shaw, Office of Research and Economic Development, Mississippi State University, Mississippi State. IP49, February 2012, 16 pp. FREE. Available online and in print (fee for shipping/handling).

Issue Papers - IP48 - January 2012

Energy Issues Affecting Corn/Soybean Systems: Challenges for Sustainable Production speaks to energy issues within the corn/soybean production system as a model for understanding the complexity of addressing global energy challenges. Research and development is needed to find ways to lower adoption barriers for energy-conserving practices and develop management systems that allow agricultural production to meet multiple demands. The challenges include (1) a growth in biofuel production directly from corn/soybeans coupled with a simultaneous growth in oil and agricultural commodity prices, and (2) the ability of the motor fuel infrastructure to handle an increased volume of ethanol, biodiesel, and advanced biofuels. The authors propose a landscape vision for sustainable corn/soybean systems that is feasible and could be done efficiently and economically if there is a desire and public willingness to do so. It would, among other things, provide sustainable grain and biomass feedstock supplies for the bioenergy industry, protect water quality, lessen producer/environmental risk, and promote biodiversity. Chair: Douglas L. Karlen, USDA—ARS, National Laboratory for Agriculture and the Environment, Ames, Iowa. IP48, January 2012, 16 pp. FREE. Available online and in print (fee for shipping/handling).