We’re down to the top nine most-read articles of 2014 featured on PorkNetwork. From activist attacks to Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus (PEDv), record market prices to a fickle Mother Nature, it’s been an undeniable year of ups and downs.

Miss any of our countdown? Here is a full look at the top 50 stories from 2014:

  1. Think twice before bashing farmers and their practices: After offending farmers everywhere with their aggressive ad campaign claiming local-raised food is healthier and anything else is just plain bad, Chipotle is feeling the effects of what some would call Karma.
  2. No El Niño in 2014? Drought-weary California in trouble: The Drought Monitor — and the Australian Bureau of Meteorology — were the bearers of bad news for Californians anxious for relief from the state’s historic drought.
  3. Food Babe visits my university: There's something that dies inside when you are a faculty member that works hard to teach about food, farming and science, and your own university brings in a crackpot to unravel all of the information you have brought to students.
  4. The PEDv tornado: A whirlwind of emotions: Attempting to protect your piglets from an invisible predator that lurks in unknown corners is truly agony. There’s the intense waiting phase where you feel that every road you drive on could stick the virus to your tires.
  5. Winter outlook: Hola El Niño, adios Polar Vortex: Winter forecasts offer a glimmer into the possibilities of a wild (or mild) season, but what does the 2014-2015 winter hold? See what forecasters are expecting from Old Man Winter.
  6. Chipotle revs up more anti-ag propaganda: Just as the buzz surrounding Chipotle’s “Scarecrow” promotion dies down, the restaurant chain is set to launch its new satirical series about farming next month.
  7. Tornado wipes out Nebraska hog farm: A farm family is left picking up the pieces with help from neighbors after a tornado ripped through their hog farm near Wisner, Neb., in June.
  8. PEDv comes to The Maschhoffs: The Maschhoffs, one of the nation’s largest pork production companies, talks of uncertainty while waging a battle against PEDv.
  9. Lighter Side: Bacon M&M's not coming soon to stores near you: Mars, Inc., maker of M&M's, pulled what many have called a “cruel” gag on bacon fans on April Fools’ Day, announcing to Facebook fans its newest addition to the M&M lineup — bacon.
  10. Meredith: PEDv isn’t funny, Jon Stewart: As a former guest on The Daily Show, I recognize better than most that the show is satirical in nature. They look for topics they can turn into comedy, but this time the show missed its mark.
  11. 13,000 sows, piglets killed in massive fire: Roughly 4,000 sows and 9,000 piglets were killed in a gigantic blaze at a sow farm in southern Minnesota. It took 10 responding fire crews from across the county and 400,000 gallons of water to get the fire under control.
  12. The Tyson letter - what does it mean?: Thoughtful, important response to the recent Tyson letter encourages a producer call-to-action. It's a valuable message.
  13. Alumbaugh: Panera gets fired: The ag industry has known for quite some time that the leadership at Panera Bread wouldn’t listen to reason. Evidently the company’s ad agency felt the same way. Chicago-based Cramer-Krasselt basically told Panera to take a hike.
  14. THE ag parody you've been waiting for: Kansas rancher Derek Klingenberg is joined by the Peterson Farm Bros. and other farmers from across the globe in his latest pro-ag parody.
  15. Baise: No joke — USDA seeks submachine guns: The headline is hard to believe. The request in the Federal Register on May 7 is not. Does the U.S. Department of Agriculture need submachine guns to police farmers?
  16. Berman: HSUS’s election losses; time to boycott Discover: Whether or not you’re a Republican, the election also had something worth celebrating: The Humane Society of the United States once again took a major hit at the polls.
  17. Brenneman: Learn the facts from a real farmer, not activists: All I want is for people to formulate their opinions from facts and real farmers, not activists who skew peoples' perception of reality.
  18. Lighter Side: No bacon for the IronPigs?: Talk about a killjoy – the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) is trying to get one minor league baseball team to "stop glorifying bacon."
  19. Former IPPA president injured in hog barn: Manure pit foam is being partially blamed for a hog barn fire at a farm near New Hampton, Iowa. The blaze was reported on Sept. 15 as owner Leon Sheets power-washed the facility. All of the hogs had been removed from the building prior to the cleaning and were left unscathed by the fire.
  20. Controlling feral hogs with…gummy bears?: There may be an unlikely source in the fight against feral hogs — gummy bears.
  21. Olthoff: 10 things I’ve learned about agriculture: Five short years ago, I was not a farmer. I thought I knew quite a bit about farming. After all, I grew up in rural Iowa! Now, almost 5 years after getting our first flock of turkeys, I could probably write a book about everything I’ve learned in the past few years.
  22. Dear Jon Stewart: Put down the activist Kool-Aid: The host of the “Daily Show” is at again, this time using activists as the authority on gestation crates.
  23. PEDv outbreak kills 14,286 pigs daily: “I’ve been a vet since 1981, and there is no precedent for this,” explains Paul Sundberg, vice president for science and technology at the National Pork Board. “It is devastatingly virulent.”
  24. PEDv can be carried in animal feed: A research study has shown for the first time that livestock feed can carry PEDv, the study's lead author said, confirming suspicions among farmers and veterinarians battling outbreaks
  25. Brenneman: The sow can’t even turn around: Did I capture your attention? It’s the phrase you see in every article against modern day pork production practices, and it’s meant to tug at your heartstrings and paint a restrictive and sad life for these animals.
  26. Stevens: Two-hundred million pounds of pork: McDonald's Corp. President and CEO says he must listen to customers, suppliers and even local minorities about how food is produced because protecting the brand is imperative.
  27. Lighter Side: Watch this farm family’s “Frozen” parody: “That’s enough, that’s enough. We won’t back away! What can we do to ditch the rule? Tell the EPA. Don’t need more government anyway."
  28. Baise: USDA’s wasteful spending: From vacation homes in Hawaii, to a duck's private parts, some of the spending by USDA in 2013 will amaze - and enrage – you.
  29. Is PEDv-inflated U.S. hog market bubble about to burst?: Fund managers and traders have chased hog prices on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange to record highs on fear of PEDv but a market reversal is likely if government data in the next two weeks shows no major damage from the disease.
  30. Berman: Camouflaged activists threaten agriculture: Normally, this column space is reserved for the goings on of HSUS and other animal-liberation activists. But recently, they haven’t been having much success.
  31. Olson: Dangerous but necessary farm work: Last week, Linden Olson talked about what it was like to take care of pigs in the winter before the industry moved to climate-controlled housing. This week he tells readers about another, more dangerous, farm chore.
  32. Meers: Too many pigs? Here’s the math: Feed conversion costs are nowhere near what they were just a year ago. With current stocking densities, do we really know how well these pigs will perform?
  33. In memoriam: Dr. James McKean: Dr. James McKean, a respected Iowa State University Swine Extension veterinarian and food safety researcher, passed away suddenly last week.
  34. PEDv: One year later: One year and 6,019 confirmed cases since it was first identified in the United States, PEDv continues to spread virtually unchecked through the country, killing pigs and producer morale along the way.
  35. Meredith: Food Babe? More like Food Bully: Last week, I told you about my conversation (if you want to call it that) with the folks at the ASPCA booth during the 2014 BlogHer Food Conference in Florida. What was even more curious was an entire breakout session on “Food Activism.”
  36. Lighter Side: 345-pound pork burger debuts at World Pork Expo: In June, the World Pork Expo once again made its way into the record books with the debut of the world’s largest pork burger.
  37. PEDv ‘like TGE on steroids’: PEDv continues to spread like wildfire across the country. Since April 2013, more than 6,400 tests across 30 states have come back positive for the disease. The numbers of pigs killed by the virus tops 7 million.
  38. Penning Pigs: Dear Matt with HSUS: Matt Prescott of HSUS responded to my post from last week and, just to clear the air, here is some more information.
  39. Could PEDv subside by 2015?: The head of the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) believes PEDv will ease before the end of the year.
  40. Feed eyed in Hawaii PEDv outbreak: State officials do not know at this time how Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus arrived on Hawaii’s shores.
  41. Preventing PEDv: Take another look at biosecurity and nutrition: Quality control and stringent biosecurity measures were once again reaffirmed as the only precautions swine producers can truly take against PEDv.
  42. Alumbaugh: The human cost of PEDv: We talk about the devastating toll on an operation when disease strikes, but we don’t talk about how it impacts the people on the farm. And that aspect is just as important.
  43. Baise: Judge dismisses Calif. egg law case but not all is lost: Agriculture in every state is impacted after a judge dismisses a California egg law lawsuit.
  44. The unspoken tragedy: Farming has the highest suicide rate among all occupations, and it's time we stepped up to bring an end to a complex and misunderstood tragedy.
  45. Lighter Side: Taylor Swift and other famous FFA members: What do Taylor Swift, Jordy Nelson and Jimmy Carter have in common? The answer: They were each former FFA members.
  46. Ohio Department of Agriculture finds new pig virus: A new swine virus, distinct from the deadly PEDv pig virus, has been found in fecal samples taken from four different farms in Ohio in January and February, the Ohio Department of Agriculture said.
  47. When PEDv hits home: Dr. Craig Rowles, a veterinarian who is also a partner and general manager of Elite Pork Partnership near Carroll, Iowa, will never forget the day one of his swine barns broke with PEDv.
  48. HSUS food industry ally spews hogwash: “Cheese-eating surrender monkeys” is how The Simpsons described the French. And it seems the French attitude has sunk into a corner of the restaurant industry.
  49. Canada eyes animal feed as PEDv spreads: The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is conducting tests to see if contaminated animal feed helped spread the piglet-killing PEDv across several Canadian provinces.
  50. Understand how PEDv survives: Where there is hog manure, there is the potential for PEDv to find its way into a hog operation. That’s an especially daunting fact because the virus sheds at extremely high levels and very little virus is needed to infect pigs.