Rural America, mostly white, is becoming more diverse – October 1, 2021

Rural America, mostly white, is becoming more diverse

Three-quarters of rural Americans are white, a larger proportion than the roughly six in 10 for the nation overall, but the rural population is becoming more diverse, said a pair of analyses of Census data. The rural America of the future will be increasingly diverse and not as politically conservative as many assume, said the Brookings Institution.

Covid is killing rural Americans at twice the rate of urbanites

Rural Americans are dying of Covid at more than twice the rate of their urban counterparts — a divide that health experts say is likely to widen as access to medical care shrinks for a population that tends to be older, sicker, heavier, poorer, and less vaccinated.

Congress approves $10 billion in disaster aid to agriculture

Farmers and ranchers would be eligible for $10 billion in disaster relief for losses in 2020 and this year under the short-term government funding bill passed by Congress on Thursday. The bill also extended the life of a livestock price-reporting bill until Dec. 3, giving lawmakers time to agree on a multiyear reauthorization.

USDA vaccine candidate is effective against African swine fever

In an achievement the USDA described as a major step for science and agriculture, scientists at the Agricultural Research Service have developed a vaccine candidate that protects hogs from the deadly African swine fever.

Today’s Quick Hits

Organic adviser at USDA: Marni Karlin, chief lawyer at the Organic Trade Association, was appointed USDA senior adviser for organic and emerging markets, and Linda Delgado, returning to a post she held during the Clinton era, was named senior adviser to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. (USDA)

Shrinking stockpile: The U.S. corn stockpile was at 1.236 billion bushels, its lowest level in seven years, on Sept. 1, the traditional start of the new harvest season. That was still 49 million bushels larger than the USDA’s estimate in early September. (USDA)

Cash rent reigns: In a seemingly unstoppable trend, cash rental has become the dominant form of leasing agreement in Illinois, accounting for more than half of the land rented in the state’s central and southern parts and three-quarters of leased land in northern Illinois. (Farmdoc Daily)

‘You’re always behind’: Sheep dairies account for fewer than 200 of the 40,000 dairy farms in the United States, a number that is unlikely to increase soon because of a lack of infrastructure for the industry and the limited milk production of sheep. (Modern Farmer)

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