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Definitions and History of Sustainable Agriculture

The USDA has defined sustainable agriculture - but underlying the definition are diverse and sometimes controversial views of sustainability. Explore a variety of approaches and practices, current and past, to appreciate where agriculture is going in the future.

USDA. NAL. Alternative Farming Systems Information Center.

Read about the issues, controversies and progress in defining "sustainable agriculture;" review practices and systems associated with sustainability; and find articles and authors.

National Research Council. Board on Agriculture; National Academy Press.

Findings and recommendation from the National Research Council's Committee on the "Role of Alternative Farming Methods in Modern Production Agriculture." (Open Book format)

Third World Network and Sociedad Cientifica Latinoamericana de Agroecologia (SOCLA).

This booklet "serves as a resource document outlining the fundamentals of agroecology and how it can inform the design and management of truly sustainable agricultural systems."

Leonardo Academy, Inc.

Formal proceedings to establish the first national standard for sustainable agriculture were launched in October 2007. This draft standard for trial use is presented by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the Scientific Certification Systems (SCS).