USDA broadband initiative provides hope, ignores major barrier

Rural communities are increasingly depending on high-speed internet to complete an education and talk to their doctors. Meanwhile, connecting to broadband internet has become a necessity in today’s digital economy. As we advance deeper into the 21st century, broadband access will grow as an important indicator of quality of life for communities across the nation.
read more

Biting into food access

By addressing key issues in food, farm, small business, and community-level and institutional policy, there is potential to identify strengths, changes needed, and gaps in the food system.
read more

Rural communities in the face of climate change

By Katie Rock Center for Rural Affairs Climate change can be difficult to fully wrap your mind around. My fear is that more people will engage only after facing a crisis themselves — losing a home due to flooding, markets upended by multi-year droughts, or water shortages. We know warming trends can accelerate or decelerate quickly depending on emissions and policies. We do not know when we...
read more

What is a market-based approach to water quality?

Last month, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a joint letter encouraging market-based, collaborative approaches to reduce excess nutrients in waterways. But, few other details were offered on how to best take this approach.
read more

Abuse of agricultural trade aid costs U.S. taxpayers

By Cora Fox Center for Rural Affairs In 2018, President Trump pledged $12 billion to provide direct aid to corn, cotton, dairy, hog, sorghum, soybean and wheat producers. Through the Market Facilitation Program, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has administered this aid to provide short-term relief to producers who are feeling the effects of ongoing trade disputes with foreign...
read more

Access points can connect communities with food

How do we increase healthy, fresh foods in rural America? One way is to identify new opportunities for people to access food. Here are five suggestions...
read more

Rural residents grapple with shifting long-term care system

Across the nation, Americans are making tough decisions about long-term health care for themselves and their loved ones.
read more

Lesser-known broadband policy leaves rural areas out

By Johnathan Hladik Center for Rural Affairs Connectivity is the defining aspect of our 21st century economy. Access to broadband internet offers the best in education, health care and economic development. Unfortunately for many, the best isn’t available. More than 24 million Americans lack broadband access. This includes 31 percent of households in rural areas, but only 2 percent in urban....
read more

National Water Quality Month highlights need for farm bill conservation programs

August is National Water Quality Month and, as we celebrate, lawmakers are negotiating the 2018 farm bill.
read more

Rural farmers markets harvest demand for healthy food

Large, hand-painted signs lean against a tent, the buzz of friendly conversation cuts through the humid air, and the smell of fresh produce drifts in the breeze — you’ve found yourself at a farmers market.
read more