Stimulation of the Rural Economy

Rural

The countryside and rural areas used to be a synonym for clean air and unspoiled nature. Unfortunately, many rural areas have become more unhealthy to live in than large cities despite all the traffic and industry. Conventional agriculture is posing one of the greatest challenges to rural conservation and regeneration efforts because it involves the use highly toxic chemicals to control the pests and increase food production. These may provide a decent income to the farmers but they have a devastating effect on human health as well as the environment.

Rural areas can be preserved and revived only with stable local economy which makes rural regeneration and preservation of the nature incompatible at a first glance. However, the task is not as difficult as it may appear. The solution is organic farming which has been shown to be an excellent alternative to conventional agricultural methods. Organic farming bases on strict avoidance of chemicals for animal and crop production which means that it does not jeopardise human health nor harms the environment. On the contrary, it helps preserve nature and increase biodiversity because it bases on the use of wildlife species for pest control and increasing the yields. These may be slightly lower than in conventional farming, however, most organic farmers create a larger income because they do not need to buy artificial fertilizers and pesticides as well as due to higher prices of organic food. Organic farming does not necessarily involve more physical labour but it requires good education and takes a few years to yield results as it heavily depends on the natural balance which cannot be created within a single year.

Great potentials for the rural economy also provides the countryside tourism. Sadly but true, most kids who live in urban and suburban areas have never seen farm animals live. Trips to the countryside to experience the rural life have therefore become increasingly common. Particularly popular are animal farms, wineries, family-run cheese factories, and “pick-your-own” fruits and vegetable farms, while many people come to the countryside to get some peace and enjoy the nature. Increased tourism also provides a major asset for small businesses such as restaurants, family-run bed&breakfasts, horse riding facilities, etc. as well as traditional craftspeople who otherwise often face difficulties selling their products and may not be able to make a living from crafting alone.

Rural

In addition for farmers and small business owners, the rural areas are also ideal for people who work from home as well as for Internet-based business owners such as shinelineltd.co.uk whose success does not depend on an attractive office/shop location. They increase the area’s income without affecting the environment in any way but it is crucial to ensure all the necessary communications infrastructure even in the most remote areas and of course, affordable housing. They may not be typical members of the rural communities, however, they increase diversity and can stimulate local economy in many ways. People who are not typical inhabitants of rural areas can also help the rural communities deal with many issues by providing a different view of the challenges they are facing.