When we think of “the rural,” California may not come to mind, though it’s estimated that 80 percent of the land area in California is rural.

Now the lines between urban and rural there are blurring. California faces an unusual challenge: productive agricultural regions are growing cities in addition to fruits, vegetables and grains. This is causing a change in federal classification which makes it harder for truly rural areas to get needed government funding.  Read more

There seems to be three ways for a nation to acquire wealth:  the first is by war…this is robbery; the second by commerce, which is generally cheating; the third by agriculture, the only honest way.”  Benjamin Franklin

The twenty-first century’s uncertainty about the future abounds with predicaments like climate change, depletion of our water resources, and the end of cheap energy.  And farmers are being called upon to assume a new role as innovators and stewards of the land because they know how to produce food. Read more

The countryside is the place to go if you want to live a healthy life with clean air and water, lots of exercise, and fresh foods, right?

Wrong.  Maybe dead wrong.

That pastoral dream is a fantasy according to a report on the relative health of counties throughout the United States released last week by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute. Read more