2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines Released

The new Dietary Guidelines for Americans have been released. Covering a five-year time frame, the guidelines, provide science-based advice that promotes health, reduces the risk of chronic disease and meets nutrient needs.
“We have taken the very important step to provide nutrition guidance that can help all Americans lead healthier lives by making every bite count,” said Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar added, “The science tells us that good nutrition leads to better health outcomes.”
One of the four main recommendations focuses on meeting food group needs with nutrient-dense foods and beverages while staying within calorie limits. Those core food groups include: grains, half of which are whole grain; low-fat dairy products; proteins, such as lean meats, poultry, eggs, beans, peas and lentils; fruits and vegetables; and oils.
Get more information on the 2020-2025 DGAs here.

Crop Progress Report – July 13

North Dakota – Dry edible bean condition rated 3% very poor, 7% poor, 29% fair, 53% good, and 8% excellent. Blooming was 23%, near 27% last year, and behind 32% average.Setting pods was 2%, near 1% last year.
Minnesota – Dry edible bean condition rated 0% very poor, 1% poor, 13% fair, 76% good, and 10% excellent. Blooming was 62%, ahead of 15% last year and 36% average. Setting pods was 21%, compared to 2% last year.
Wyoming – Dry edible bean condition rated 15% fair and 85% good. Blooming was 20%, ahead of 16% last year and 6% average.
Colorado – Dry edible bean condition rated 17% very poor, 18% poor, 31% fair, 33% good, and 1% excellent. Blooming was 14%, behind 17% last year and 16% average.
Idaho – Dry edible bean condition rated 2% poor, 18% fair, 78% good, and 2% excellent.
Oregon – Dry edible bean condition rated 2% very poor, 4% poor, 13% fair, 60% good, and 21% excellent.
Washington – Dry edible bean condition rated 4% poor, 16% fair, 72% good, and 8% excellent.
Nebraska – Dry edible bean condition rated 1% poor, 18% fair, 72% good, and 9% excellent. Blooming was 20% and setting pods was 1%.
Michigan – Dry edible bean condition rated 4% very poor, 10% poor, 40% fair, 42% good, and 4% excellent. Emergence was 89%.
View the latest USDA Weekly Crop Progress Report here.

Thrifty Thursday: Mexican Style Pizzas

Everyone loves pizza, and these Mexican-style pizzas use a flour tortilla in place of a crust. Using a flour tortilla is a great way to put together a complete meal that can be assembled in just a few minutes. Beans are also used on the pizza for a great, low-cost source of plant-based protein.

Thrifty Thursday: One-Pot BBQ Chicken & Bean Pot-Pie

This time of year you’re probably craving the flavors of summer barbecue. However, some nights it’s a little too cold to get outside and fire up the grill. This one pot BBQ Chicken & Bean Pot Pie combines all the flavors of summer into one dish, and the whole recipe can be made inside in the oven. Remember that using beans not only adds great flavor and nutrition, it also saves money. Beans cost about four times less than chicken, so using beans are part of your protein stretches your dollar. Click here to watch Megan Myrdal from Northarvest demo this recipe on North Dakota Today. 

One-Pot BBQ Chicken & Beans Pot Pie

Yield: 10 servings
Pre Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total time: 50 minutes

1 ½ – 2 lbs of chicken, cooked through & shredded or cubed
¾ cup barbecue sauce (smokey flavored)
1 (22 oz) can BUSH’s Southern Pit Barbeque Grillin’ Beans
1 (14.5 oz) can Fire Roasted Corn (or regular – fire roasted adds more flavor)
½ medium green bell pepper, diced
1 box (14-16 ounces) cornbread mix + ingredients listed on box (milk and eggs)
1 ½ cups shredded cheddar cheese


Preheat the oven to 375°F. Spray a 9 x 13 inch baking dish with cooking spray. Set aside.
Place cooked, shredded chicken in a bowl (or baking dish). Add beans, corn, bell pepper and remaining bbq sauce and stir to combine. Transfer to prepared baking dish (if mixed in bowl)
In a separate bowl, mix together the baking mix, milk and egg and 1 cup of cheese. Spoon cornbread mixture evenly over the chicken and beans mixture.
Bake for 30-40 minutes., until cornbread is golden brown on top. You’ll know the dish is ready when the mixture is bubbly and the cornbread is baked through.
Remove from oven and sprinkle top with remaining cheese while hot from the oven, so cheese melts into the top of the cornbread.

Recipe adapted from Tidy Mom

Thrifty Thursday: Cheesy Pasta and Bean Bake

Did you know that for less than $10 you can make a delicious and nutritious meal for the entire family? This past week, Northarvest Director of Domestic Marketing & Communication Megan Myrdal was on North Dakota Today featuring cheesy past and bean bake.
Using beans as a protein is a great a way to reduce the cost of any hotdish recipe. Additionally, a serving of beans is significantly less than a serving of meat.

Mexico Begins New Ag Price Support Program

The Mexican government has launched a new price support program in Zacatecas and Durango. However, the program was initiated later than the long standing price support programs. As a result, producers waited longer than usual to sell beans to participating elevators to obtain price guarantees.
Additionally, the U.S. Dry Bean Council has released the Mexico fall/winter harvest projects. Those projections can be viewed at this link.

Beans Nourish a Healthy Gut

Healthy gut microbes are linked to lower risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes, cancer and heart disease. How can you keep your gut microbes happy? Bacteria feed on certain types of carbohydrates, including the resistant starch found in beans. It’s one more way that including beans in meals helps protect against chronic disease. Read more.

Beans for Blood Pressure

The effective and long-standing DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diet encourages regular consumption of beans to help lower blood pressure. It’s rich in nutrients that are associated with lower blood pressure like potassium, magnesium, calcium, fiber and protein, while restricting sugars and saturated fats.

See how beans check all of the DASH diet boxes. Read more here.

Thrifty Thursday: Beans and Potatoes!

Dry beans and potatoes are two locally grown foods that are nutritious. There are so many ways consumers can enjoy them, and it won’t break the bank. Both are always reasonably priced, widely available and something that can be enjoyed multiple times throughout the week.

This past Thursday, Northarvest Bean Growers Association’s Megan Myrdal shared quick and easy dinner ideas on North Dakota Today. Watch the segment.