Most ‘hard-to-count’ counties in U.S. census are in rural areas

The bulk of “hard-to-count” counties for the upcoming 2020 census — 251 out of the total of 316 counties that qualify — are in rural America, according to a briefing paper from the Carsey School of Public Policy in New Hampshire.

Minorities lead rural growth, keeping communities alive

Between 1980-2015, 99 percent of rural counties saw a rise in their minority population, bringing new economic vitality and slowing population decline in those areas, according to a report by Headwaters Economics, a nonprofit research group focused on Western land use. The U.S. is predicted to have a majority minority-population by 2044.

Agriculture needs ‘transformational change,’ says World Bank advisor

Marc Sadler, an advisor to the World Bank on agriculture risk and markets, told an Agrimoney conference that global agriculture needs "transformational change" to meet rising demand for food at the same time there is concern about controlling greenhouse gas emissions. Agriculture is a major source of the gases.

Less pressure on feeding the world by 2050?

In an academic letter parsing "four indicators that explain world grain and oilseed market developments" since 1980, two University of Missouri economists draw a sanguine conclusion about feeding the world at mid-century. It will be a challenge "but it would require a much smaller proportional increase in world grain and oilseed production over the next 35 years than was achieved over the last 35 years," write economists Pat Westhoff and Wyatt Thompson. That's because "Chinese demand and biofuel production account for the entire net increase in world per-capita grain and oilseed consumption since 1980."

Purdue opens first field phenotyping facility in North America

Mitch Daniels, president of Purdue University, says the school's newly dedicated Indiana Corn and Soybean Innovation Center "will play a big part" in helping to assure enough food for the rising world population. The center is the first field phenotyping facility in North America.

Decline in rural population easing

The first-ever overall decline in the number of people living in rural America may be ending, says USDA, drawing on Census Bureau estimates of population by county.

U.S. bread basket, meet the Protein Highway of North America

Officials from Canada and the United States will launch the Protein Highway initiative this summer to brand six U.S. states and three Canadian provinces as the region with potential to become the world's biggest supplier of protein, says the Pierre (SD) Capital Journal.

Global population growth underlines hunger challenge

The world population will grow by one-third, to 9.7 billion people, by mid-century, the United Nations estimates. And with the population surging in poor countries, it will be harder to assure enough food for everyone.

Fewer food-insecure people now but conditions will worsen

There are fewer food-insecure people in the low- and middle-income nations of the world, about 475 million, or 46 million less than last year, says the government.

Rural counties lose population, just barely this time

"Rural America continued to lose population last year," says the Carsey School of Public Policy, after perusing the new Census Bureau report on domestic migration.

Cut back on crop-based biofuels to close the world food gap

The think tank World Resources Institute says the world food gap could be narrowed greatly if crop-based biofuels - made from corn, sugarcane or vegetable oils - are eliminated. In a working paper, WRI points to estimates that food production must rise by 70 percent by 2050 to feed the growing world population. "If crop-based biofuels were phased out, the 2050 crop calorie gap would decrease from 70 percent to about 60 percent, a significant step toward a sustainable food future," says the report by Tim Searchinger and Ralph Heimlich.

“Two different worlds based on population density”

Republican candidates for the U.S. House won in 82 percent of counties in last fall's general election "and Democrats did best in the most densely populated counties," says the Daily Yonder.

Counties with good broadband grow faster, says study

"Counties with better broadband access are adding population at 10 times the rate of counties that lack good broadband connections," says the Daily Yonder in summarizing a study that appears in the trade publication Broadband Communities.

NAS report lists priorities for food animal research

A report from the National Academy of Sciences suggest four priorities for research to assure an adequate meat supply for a world population that could reach 10 billion by 2050.

Is a nearby city the secret to keeping a rural population?

Proximity to an urban center may be key for maintaining rural population, say three Iowa State University researchers.

Rural America loses population, again

Nearly 15 percent of Americans live in nonmetropolitan counties, also known as rural areas, a total of 46.2 mln people in 2013.

“Climate change is a food security issue”

The durable Thomas Malthus, who helped economics gain its nickname of the dismal science with his belief population growth would forever strain the food supply, takes a cameo role as the New York Times'...