Institute Initiatives

The Institute has initiated a number of activities and conducted numerous roundtable dialogues between various individuals and organizations. In recent years the Institute expanded its technology information initiatives for the public interested in the food and meat industry.


The logo.

  • Institute offers College Scholarship
    The Institute for Rural America offers the Charles Skorupa Memorial Farm Scholarship. Our scholarship is awarded to a high school senior who plans to attend an accredited post-secondary school in an ag-related field. The amount of the scholarship is $1,000. Recipients will be selected on the following criteria:

    - Academic performance, career goals and involvement in agriculture, as well as ag- related clubs and organizations.
    - Applicant must be a student enrolled as
    - Senior in good academic standing in an accredited high school program

    Click here for Application
  • The Livestock Brief is an information, education initiative and was created for cattle and hog producers.  It’s a joint effort with the Organization for Competitive Markets and provides market, meat company and trade information and news.
  • MeatFYI. is an Internet initiative and provides news and information on the North American red meat industry.  Daily updates on beef and pork industry news and markets, plus fresh updates on meat and food companies; and a Watchlist of items to keep an eye on.
  • The Institute for Rural America's OFARM 2014 project built support for organic grain farmers by connecting food coop consumers to the real voices and issues of organic grain farming and provide consumers with tangible ways to support all organic farmers.
  • Exploring Livestock Marketing Groups Using New Technology was a 2013 project the Institute was involved in evaluating. The project involved developing tech so that individual and groups of producers could market their livestock to buyers through a farmer-to-farmer marketing system.
  • Connecting Young Farmers Conferences, Leadership for Our Future      
    Our first effort in the leadership area, occurred in 2008, and focused on developing future agricultural leaders. Held in St. Joseph, Mo., Aug. 8-9, it attracted more than 30 producers from Indiana to the Pacific Ocean.
  • Bee Keeper Grant: The Institute assisted in development of an educational program and series of meetings for the Mid US Honeybee Producers Association.
  • Northeast Center for Risk Management Education Grant: The Institute for Rural America provided more than $23,000 in services to New York agricultural producers focused on risk management education.
  • Rural USA. An Internet site informing people about our series of continuing initiatives focusing on American agricultural issues. One initiative has involved organic producers and players and involved roundtable dialogues. These have resulted in the creation of OFARM, an “umbrella” organization for organic producer groups providing ongoing information exchange.
  • Another RuralUSA initiative involved playing a background role in helping to encourage and initiate an informational conference for commercial farmers and ranchers both large and small. This work resulted in the CLOUT conference, ultimately sponsored by Successful Farming magazine.
  • One more RuralUSA effort acts to protect rural property from incompatible industrial or commercial development. One of the projects resulted in assumption of property ownership that created a tax benefit to the donors and protection to the land for future generations (see for more information).
  • More information on these and other Institute  initiatives carried out in support of US agriculture and America’s rural communities is available at our project website at

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Institute for Rural America
P.O. Box 566
Ames, Iowa 50010

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The Institute for Rural America is a nonprofit charitable 501c3 organization.