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research institute

Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture

Iowa State University
The Leopold Center is a research and education center with statewide programs to develop sustainable agricultural practices that are both profitable and conserve natural resources. . . . In general, sustainable agriculture addresses the ecological, economic and social aspects of agriculture. To be sustainable, agriculture can operate only when the environment, its caretakers and surrounding communities are healthy. Sustainable agriculture, as defined by the U.S. Department of Agriculture in the 1990 Farm Bill: "...over the long term, satisfy human needs, enhance environmental quality and natural resource base, make the most efficient use of nonrenewable resources and integrate natural biological processes, sustain economic viability, and enhance quality of life."

Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education -- SARE

National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA)/USDA
Since 1988, the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program has helped advance farming systems that are profitable, environmentally sound and good for communities through a nationwide research and education grants program.

Center for a Livable Future

Johns Hopkins University
To promote research and to develop and communicate information about the complex interrelationships among diet, food production, environment and human health; to advance an ecological perspective in reducing threats to the health of the public; and to promote policies that protect health, the global environment and the ability to sustain life for future generations.

Rodale Institute

Rodale Institute

Through Organic leadership we improve the health and well being of people and the planet.
Rodale Institute is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to pioneering organic farming through research and outreach. For over sixty-years, we’ve been researching the best practices of organic agriculture and sharing our findings with farmers and scientists throughout the world, advocating for policies that support farmers, and educating consumers about how going organic is the healthiest options for people and the planet.

State of the Organic Union

Check out this article by Maria Rodale in the Atlantic Monthly.

Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy

In the mid-1980s, family farmers across America were in the fight of their lives. Prices had dropped below the cost of production. Family farmers were told they were inefficient and they had to either get big or get out. Deeply flawed national and international policies were the root cause of the crisis. A galvanizing effort to save the family farm helped spawn the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP). In 1986, IATP began documenting the underlying causes of America's rural crisis and proposing policies that would benefit farmers, consumers, rural communities and the environment. IATP

Permaculture Institute

Located near Santa Fe, New Mexico, the Permaculture Institute was founded in 1997 as the sister organization to the Permaculture Institute of Australia. It came on the footsteps of the Permaculture Drylands Institute, formerly the leading permaculture educational institution in the US. Our mission is to promote sustainable living skills through education, networking and demonstration projects. We facilitate networking among permaculture groups and projects in NM/Southwestern region and beyond. Joining FarmLINK is easy!

Sustainable Farming Internships and Apprenticeships

This directory of on-the-job learning opportunities in sustainable and organic agriculture in the U.S. (and some in Canada) has been published since 1989 as a tool to help farmers and apprentices connect with each other. The listed farms are primarily seeking interns/apprentices from North America. Search for or list your internship or apprenticeship here!

Sustainable Jersey Certified

Sustainable Maryland Certified, University of Maryland

Sustainable Jersey Certified is a model for a similar program being developed in Maryland, Sustainable Maryland Certified.  "Sustainable Maryland Certified is a new initiative of the Environmental Finance Center at the University of Maryland (EFC) designed to support Maryland’s 157 municipalities as they look for cost?effective and strategic ways to protect their natural assets and revitalize their communities. Using best practices in resource areas like water, air, waste, energy, equity, and economy, a municipality can earn points toward sustainability certification."

United States National Arboretum

The United States National Arboretum was established in 1927 by an Act of Congress, to serve the public need for scientific research, education, and gardens that conserve and showcase plants to enhance the environment.

The Arboretum is administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service. The Arboretum lies on 446 acres in NorthEast Washington, DC, with other research location in Beltsville, MD and McMinnville, TN.

Research includes wide-ranging basic and developmental studies of trees, shrubs, turf, and floral plants. Development of new technologies for the floral and nursery industries. Development of plants with superior characteristics through a program of testing and genetic improvement. Taxonomy and nomenclature of ornamental plants and their wild relatives. Collection and preservation of plant germplasm with ornamental potential.

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