Erica Hunzinger

Erica Hunzinger is the editor of Harvest Public Media, based at KCUR in Kansas City, Missouri.

Born and bred in central Illinois, Erica branched out to the University of Missouri-Columbia for her journalism degree and later earned an MA in Humanities (with an emphasis on poetry) from the University of Chicago.

Previously, Erica was the politics, education and criminal justice editor at St. Louis Public Radio. For five years before that, she was a member of The Associated Press' Central Region editing desk, where she took a keen interest in working on regional agriculture stories. Erica also spent time on copy-editing desks at The News Journal in Wilmington, Delaware, and The News & Observer in Raleigh, North Carolina.

She's a farmer's granddaughter, quite familiar with the smell of cow manure and processed soybeans, and tries to nurture flowers and plants in her spare time.

Editors note, June 28, 2018: The CDC says the data referenced in this story about farmer suicides is incorrect, due to "coding issues" and that the agency will work to correct the data, according to media outlet The New Food Economy. Updated suicide numbers for farmers have not yet been released.

Farming involves a degree of inherent risk, such as environmental and biological factors like drought and disease, which can come and go practically without warning. Depressed commodity and dairy prices and a burgeoning trade war are adding to that usual stress and taking a toll on farmers.

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is the biggest federal program aimed at breaking the cycle of poverty that millions of Americans find themselves in — sometimes for a few months, sometimes for several years.