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IRE Radio Podcast | The Toughest Interview of My Life

There are some phone calls that will always be hard to make as a reporter. Reaching out to grieving relatives in the wake of a death is one of them. On this episode, Minneapolis Star Tribune reporter Jeff Meitrodt discusses what it was like to do that over and over again as he pieced together a powerful four-part investigation on deaths on family farms.

As always, you can find us on Soundcloud, iTunes and Stitcher. If you have a story you think we should feature on the show, drop us a note at We’d love to hear from you.



Looking for links to the stories, resources and events we discussed on this week's podcast? We've collected them for you.

  • Read Jeff’s four-part investigation, "Tragic Harvest" on the Star Tribune’s website.
  • Members only: Download a 2015 guide to using the Bureau of Labor Statistics Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages (QCEW) data to provide information for stories.
  • Members only: Download a list of tips and resources on environmental reporting. Includes information on using data to report and verify a story, souring, using scientific research and much more.



Aaron Pellish reported and produced this episode. Shawn Shinneman is our host. IRE Web Editor Sarah Hutchins edits the podcast. 

Music in this episode is by Podington Bear and Kai Engel.

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