RURAL DEVELOPMENT
One of the greatest tragedies resulting from globalization has been the destruction of hundreds of thousands of family farms and rural communities across the planet. As this process continues, society losses it’s economic balance. Local communities in the United States have lost their ability to be self-reliant to just five multinational corporations who now control the entire food industry. Today over nine million people live below the poverty line in depressed rural areas across this country.

The following resources are meant to revitalize the family farm and the rural community. PROUT maintains that thirty to forty percent of the population should be directly involved in agriculture, with another twenty percent on pre-agricultural production (seeds, equipment etc.), and twenty percent on post-agricultural production (processing, manufacturing etc.). This is necessary in order to have a balanced economy and not depend upon the exploitation of smaller countries for our livelihood. Here agriculture means production of natural goods. It also includes forest products, mineral products, and plant and animal products.
 
The Family Farm
Organic Gardening and Sustainable Agriculture 
Beekeeping
Soil Conservation 
Pests
Tools/Machinery 
Building Construction
Rural Community Development Resources 
Research 
The National Agricultural Library 


The Family Farm

CyberFarm
http://w3.ag.uiuc.edu/infoag/cyberfarm/
Resources for the American farmer. Mainstream slant, but contains many good resources. Information is organized according to: The CyberFarmer • The Cyberfarm Diner • Input Suppliers • Marketing • Education • Support Services.

Homestead.Org
http://www.homestead.org/
Great resource for rural families or Master Units seeking self-reliance in meeting basic needs. Pointers to General Information • Agriculture • Animals • Building • Skills • Energy • Business and Finance • Food • Home and Family • Land • Health • Transportation • Wild Resources and Survival. Each topic includes links to web sites, literature, organizations, suppliers and usenet groups.

Backwoods Home Magazine
http://www.backwoodshome.com/
If you want a more self-sufficient lifestyle for yourself and your family, Backwoods Home Magazine can help you achieve it. Every issue is jam-packed with solid, practical, hands-on information on a wide range of self-reliance topics. The articles in BHM are written by the people who are out there doing it. You'll find articles on country living, building a homestead, tools, gardening, livestock, alternative energy, recipes, making a living, self sufficiency, preparedness, homeschooling, crafts, nature, how to do it yourself, achieving independence, and much more.

The Survivalist
http://www.gate.net/~dlpaxton/
A definition of a Survivalist: One who provides for possible future crises, be they natural disasters or political/economic disasters, so as to have the food and tools necessary for continued existence. This site has downloadable articles on CACHING: when, where, why, and how much. It also has pointers to: Important Links • Downloadable Files • Pick Publications.


Organic Gardening and Sustainable Agriculture

Howard Garrett's Basic Organic Program
http://www.whitehawk.com/dirtdoctor/
An on-line "how to" manual on organic gardening. Pointers to Principles of Organic Gardening • Tips and Info • Controlling Insects • Organic Herbicides and Pesticides • Flea Control and more.

Noah's Ark: Homepage of an Organic Farmer
http://www.rain.org/~sals/my.html
Tidbits from an organic farmer. Includes good pointers to information on controlling weeds and pests organically. Also contains a pointer to certification boards in each state.

Plants for a Future
http://www.sunsite.unc.edu/InterGarden/permaculture/mailarchives/permaculture-links/msg00061.html
A collection of leaflets about edible and other useful plants including plants for lighting, fiber, soaps, oils and information on permaculture and perennials plants.

Seeds of Change: Organically Grown Seeds
http://www.seedsofchange.com/
This seed company offers certified organic, open-pollinated seeds to the public. It provides over 439 unique varieties of vegetables, herbs, and flowers. You can order a catalogue on-line. This is also a great resource if you want to create your own seed-bank.

Michael Fields Agricultural Institute
http://www.steinercollege.org/anthrop/mfai.html
Sustainable agriculture improves the soil and the natural environment. It avoids chemical herbicides, pesticides, fungicides and synthetic fertilizers. It also avoids use of treated seeds. This is a site of an education and research institute to help farmers move from traditional to sustainable agriculture practices. Has some good on-line articles on building up the soil.

InterGarden
http://sunsite.unc.edu/london/sustainable_agriculture.html
This site allows a Search of its archives • Information on Sustainable Agriculture • Aquaculture • Biodynamics • Composting and more.

A BioDynamic Farm Book
http://sunsite.unc.edu/london/althealth/Sustainable-Agriculture/biodynamics/
Goes one step beyond organic agriculture be experimenting with agriculture principles that actually heal the earth's systems. Based on the work of Rudolph Steiner. This site contains a collection of materials about the subject.


Beekeeping

Welcome to the Beekeepers Homepage
http://weber.u.washington.edu/~jlks/bee.html
Research • Methods • Organizations • Resources • etc.


Soil Conservation

Soil and Water Conservation Society
http://www.swcs.org/
The international headquarters of the Soil and Water Conservation Society offers many archives of information, especially useful to members, but also valuable for nonmembers. Pointers to: The Journal of Soil and Water Conservation • SWCS membership benefits • The Conservogram newsletter • Certified Professional in Erosion and Sediment Control (CPESC) certification program • Conferences • Books and publications • Job opportunities • Other links to conservation publications, associations, and agencies • Policy Position Statements • Land application of municipal biosolids (how to manage municipal sewage sludge effectively) • Effective management of animal manure (how to manage animal manure as a nutrient source while protecting and conserving the quality of natural resources).

Pests

Association of Natural Bio-Control Producers
http://ipmwww.ncsu.edu/biocontrol/anbp/HomePage.html
This site provides useful information on biological control agents and their use in both commercial agriculture and home gardening. Pointers to: About ANBP • ANBP Forum • Biocontrol Fact Sheets • Bio-Control Matters Newsletter • Pests Controlled •
Members and Suppliers • Biotactics - commercial information, supplier web sites •
Free Stuff from the USDA • More Biocontrol Information.

Integrated Pest Management at Iowa State
http://www.ipm.iastate.edu/ipm/
Pointers to: Integrated Crop Management Newsletter • Horticulture and Home Pest News • Iowa Insect Information Notes • Weed Management • Iowa State University Extension • Upcoming Field Days • Entomology Index of Internet Resources • Corn Rootworm Home Page • European Corn Borer Home Page • IPM projects in the North Central States.

Horticulture and Home Pest News
http://www.ipm.iastate.edu/ipm/hortnews/
This site provides an index on back issues of this publication. Topics include: General Horticulture • House Plants • Insects (Home and Garden) • Outdoor Plants • Plant Diseases • Small Fruits • Trees and Shrubs • Tree Fruits • Turfgrass • Vegetables. You can also search Horticulture and Home Pest News articles from 1992 to the present.

Insects and Weeds on the Web
http://www.rain.org/~sals/bugs.html
Many great resources with information on how to control pests and weeds organically. Some sites have photos of pests to help identify them.

Mole Chaser
http://www.magick.net/~tower/molechas.htm
This site advertises an electronic device you insert in the ground. The product emits a frequency that ground burrowing rodents can not tolerate.


Tools/Machinery

FastFinder
http://www.fastfinder.com/
An online directory of new and used farm equipment, machinery and supplies for sale. Stronger classifieds in the Midwest than in the rest of the country.


Building Construction

Building and Construction Supplies
http://www.homestead.org/builsupp.htm
A good list of suppliers for barns, geodesic domes, log cabin kits, yurt kits and miscellaneous building supplies.

Resource Guide for Straw-Bale Construction
http://www.xmission.com:80/~shea/straw/
Site for building homes using straw bales for insulation and load-bearing walls. Pointers to Individual and Organizations • Bibliographies • Internet Resources • Events • Historic Structures • Utah Straw Bale Structures • The Gallery • Out on Bale. Information on how to mix with solar power.


Rural Community Development Resources

Rural and Small Town
http://www.mta.ca/rstp/
This site is dedicated to three objectives: How to help governments empower communities / How to help communities empower themselves / How to use communication technologies in rural areas. Bonus: This site provides a free diskette on doing a rural survey. This is a great source, dedicated to sustainable development.

Organizations with Rural Interests
http://www.mta.ca/rstp/rstp2g.html
A long list of sites in the US and Canada that provide resources for rural developers. Just click and away you go.

Cooperative State Research Education & Extension Service Home Page
http://www.reeusda.gov/csrees.htm
A lot of information here. Pointers to: What's New • Welcome Message from the Administrator • Mission and Program Area Descriptions • About the Cooperative State Research, Education and Extension Service • Cooperative Partners in Research, Education, and Extension • News and Current Events • For Your Convenience.

Rural Economic and Community Development, USDA
http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/
This is the server for the Rural Development agencies of the US Department of Agriculture. The agencies are the Rural Utilities Service, the Rural Business Service and the Rural Housing Service. The purpose of this site is to provide access to the informational resources of these agencies. Pointers to: Rural Development Programs and Assistance • Development Ideas That Work • National Rural Development Partnership • National Rural Development Partnership • AmeriCorps • Rural Development Regulations • State-by State Office Listings • Online Issue Discussion Groups • 1996 Farm Bill: Rural Highlights • Water 2000 Initiative • Rural Development Employment Opportunities. The site also includes leads to other rural development servers and sites.


Research

Holt International
http://dspace.dial.pipex.com/town/terrace/abg27/default.htm
Links to sites covering the following topics: Growing Crops ( 8 ) • Crop husbandry ( 8 ) • Crop disease, weeds, pests & problems ( 9 ) • Livestock ( 8 ) • Agri-business ( 7 ) • Gardens & garden plants ( 4 ) • Green issues ( 7 ) • Wild Flora & Fauna ( 10 ) • Landscapes and views ( 10 ) • Local contacts ( 5 ).

US Census of Agriculture: 1982, 1987, 1992
http://govinfo.kerr.orst.edu/ag-stateis.html
Search agricultural information at the state, county or zip code level. Contains information on crop acreage and quantities harvested, inventories of livestock and poultry, value of products sold, land use and ownership, irrigation activities, amount of commodity credit loans, number of hired laborers, federal program payments, and operator characteristics. Selected operators provide additional information on production expenses (including interest), fertilizer and chemical use, machinery and equipment, market value of land and buildings, and income from farm-related sources.
State and local governments and farm organizations use census data to
analyze and develop policies on land use, water use and irrigation, rural
development, and farmland assessments.

USDA Economic Research Service
http://www.econ.ag.gov/
Reports, statistics and links on rural economic activity.


The National Agricultural Library

National Agricultural Library (NAL)
http://www.nalusda.gov/
This is one of four national libraries. The others are the Library of Congress, National Library of Medicine and the National Library of Education. The NAL has ten information centers with the goal of increasing the availability and utilization of agricultural information to support research, education and applied agriculture. The ten centers are Agricultural Trade and Marketing • Alternative Farming Systems • Animal Welfare • Aquaculture • Biotechnology • Food and Nutrition • Plant Genome Data • Rural • Rural Health Services • Technology Transfer • Water Quality. At the NAL site, click on General Information. It will provide you with pointers to the information centers. To go directly to the centers here are the URLs:

Agricultural Trade and Marketing Information Center
http://www.nalusda.gov/atmic/
The ATMIC serves as a clearinghouse of information resources and/or as an information broker in many aspects of agricultural marketing and trade.

Alternative Farming Systems Information Center
http://www.nalusda.gov/afsic/
This is the one for information on sustainable agriculture and organic farming.

Animal Welfare Information Center
http://www.nalusda.gov/awic/
Animal Legislation & Policies • Bibliographies • Newsletters

Aquaculture Information Center
http://www.nalusda.gov/aic/
Clearinghouse on aquaculture. Directories and contact lists • Publications • Links to aquaculture information.

Biotechnology Information Center
http://www.nal.usda.gov/bic/
Links to Ag Biotech-related WWW homepages and Gophers • Bibliographies and Resource Guides • Biotechnology Education Resources • Biotechnology News & Newsletters • Biotechnology Patents Selected full-text patents and links to other patent resources • Biotechnology Software for downloading or previewing • Bioremediation Resources - Documents and links • and more.

Food and Nutrition Information Center
http://www.nalusda.gov/fnic/
Dietary guidelines • Healthy eating index • Publications • Health school meals • Food service management • Food labeling education • Foodborne illnesses • WIC materials • Other nutrition sites • Menus and recipes. Dgeetyet?

Plant Genome Data and Information Center
http://www.nalusda.gov/pgdic/
Plant, insect and animal genome mapping. Highly technical.

Rural Information Center
http://www.nalusda.gov/ric/
This is a big one for rural revitalization. Pointers to Economic revitalization • Local government planning • Rural health • Funding sources • Technical assistance programs • Research studies • Tourism • Recycling • Community development strategies.

Rural Information Center Health Service
http://www.nalusda.gov/ric/richs
Collects and disseminates information on rural health issues. Links to Office of Rural Health Policy • Funding sources • Conferences • Publications • Research centers • Organizations • Links.

Technology Transfer Information Center
http://www.nalusda.gov/ttic/
This center promotes rapid conversion of federally-developed inventions into commercial products by getting the results of research into the hands of individuals and organizations who can put it to practical use.

Water Quality Information Center
http://www.nalusda.gov/wqic/
Access to the largest store of information on water and agriculture.

 
 

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