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Abstract

Projections indicate the world is entering a new era of tighter food supply relative to demand than in recent decades. Although urban areas in the U.S. occupy only 3 percent of the nation's land, the average state supplies too small a share of global food needs to motivate it to preserve land for food security. Citizens like open spaces, but scenic areas are preferred to farmland. Thus, if preserving land for future needs is important, the issue must be addressed at the national and international level as well as the state level. Statistical analysis indicates most U.S. farmland transferred to other uses has been the result of unprofitability of farming rather than the result of urban encroachment.

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