New Curriculum Educates Youth on Value-added Agriculture Opportunities for Rural Development

AMES, Iowa — The Agricultural Marketing Resource Center (AgMRC) offers a new, free curriculum to educate youth on opportunities for rural development through value-added agriculture. The curriculum, located on the AgMRC website,, provides instructors with full lesson plans on agritourism, aquaculture, livestock, biomass and renewable energy. Information for the curriculum is drawn directly from the website.

AgMRC, located at Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, is an electronic, national resource for producers interested in value-added agriculture. Users of the website can browse commodities and products, investigate market and industry trends, study business creation and operation, read research results and locate value-added resources.

“Our goal is to continue to promote and advance opportunities within value-added agriculture,” said Ray Hansen, director of AgMRC. “Educating the future of agriculture on value-added opportunities is crucial to the continued economic development we see happening in rural America.”

Vocational agriculture instructors can utilize lesson plans to engage students in a natural versus organic debate, the creation of posters, interviews of value-added businesses within their community and a case study analysis of their own value-added ag enterprise.

Additional curriculum materials will be added throughout the fall of 2012. The full curriculum is available at



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