Encyclopedia of Food and Agricultural Ethics

2019 Edition
| Editors: David M. Kaplan

Agriculture of the Middle

  • George W. StevensonEmail author
  • Kate Clancy
  • Fred Kirschenmann
  • Kathryn Ruhf
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-94-024-1179-9_357

Synonyms

Introduction

This entry focuses on ethical issues associated with the decline and potential renewal of midsized farms and ranches in the USA. The “disappearing middle” was first identified in the 1980s. Contemporary attention to the dynamics of this declining farm sector is accompanied by strategies for renewing an “agriculture of the middle.” A national agriculture of the middle initiative posits a threefold approach to rebuilding the middle sector of the US farm and ranch structure through new business and marketing strategies, particularly those identified as “values-based” food supply chains, public policy changes, and research and education support.

Ethical considerations focus on five areas: (1) diversity, resilience, competition, and opportunity in agriculture; (2) fairness and equity through the supply chain; (3) consumer choice and...

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • George W. Stevenson
    • 1
    Email author
  • Kate Clancy
    • 2
  • Fred Kirschenmann
    • 3
  • Kathryn Ruhf
    • 4
  1. 1.Center for Integrated Agricultural SystemsUniversity of Wisconsin/MadisonMadisonUSA
  2. 2.Center for a Livable FutureJohns Hopkins School of Public HealthBaltimoreUSA
  3. 3.Leopold Center for Sustainable AgricultureIowa State UniversityAmesUSA
  4. 4.Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working GroupBelchertownUSA