Beginning and Minority Farmers


The Future of Farming Depends on the Future of Farm Research

March 7, 2017

What does the future of agriculture look like? To the extent that many consumers think about this issue it is only a few months at a time – we may be wistfully thinking of that time in spring when asparagus is at its peak, or wondering how the price of milk or eggs may be […]

Congressional Hearings Kick Off Farm Bill and Appropriations Season

March 1, 2017

In recent weeks, the debate around the next farm bill – which will be up for reauthorization next year – has begun to gain momentum. The Senate Agriculture Committee held its first field hearing last week in Kansas and yesterday the House Agriculture Committee held its first subcommittee hearing focused on the farm bill, choosing […]

New Guide Simplifies Federal Programs for Farmers

February 17, 2017

Which U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) agencies have programs that are tailored to meet the needs of diversified farming operations, organic growers, or beginning farmers? What resources are available for small- and mid-sized growers looking to reach expanding regional markets, and where can you find them? For most people, even many farmers and ranchers, the […]

FSA Loans to Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers Drop in 2016

February 9, 2017

Editor’s Note: This is the third post of a three-part blog series analyzing the impacts of the Farm Service Agency’s fiscal year (FY) 2016 direct and guaranteed loan programs. This blog will focus on socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers and the trends in their loan participation across the U.S. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) […]

FSA Loans Remain Popular with Beginning Farmers; Guaranteed Lender Support Falling Behind

February 3, 2017

Editor’s Note: This is the second post of a three-part blog series detailing the outcomes of fiscal year (FY) 2016 direct and guaranteed loan data. This blog will focus specifically on beginning farmers and ranchers (BFRs) and their loan participation trends across the U.S. In the early 1990s, the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC) led […]

Growing Demand for FSA Loans in 2016 Shows Importance of Credit

January 26, 2017

Editor’s Note: This is the first post of a 3-part analysis of the FSA loan program throughout FY 2016. Click here to see part 2 (on beginning farmers and ranchers) and here for part 3 (on socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers). Whether a farmer’s goal is to start up a new operation, expand their farm, […]

FSA Cooperative Agreements Connect Farmers to USDA Programs

January 25, 2017

  The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is dedicated to helping farmers start, grow, and improve their businesses. Farmers are busy people, however, and cannot always easily access information and programs from USDA. This has been especially challenging for farmers of color, military veteran farmers, women farmers, and farmers who utilize less conventional practices and […]

How Sustainable Agriculture Advocates Can Take Action in 2017

January 24, 2017

With a new president and the 115th Congress recently sworn in, farmers and sustainable agriculture advocates around the country have been asking: What does this new Administration and Congress mean for agriculture and food policy? How can we most effectively advocate and continue to make change on the issues that we care about? Here at […]

CRP Land Transfer Option Provides Opportunity for Beginning Farmers and Ranchers

January 10, 2017

In a 2011 survey by National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition (NSAC) member organization, National Young Farmers Coalition, access to land was ranked as the biggest challenge by 68% of responding farmers. With the average age of American farmers steadily rising, supporting the cultivation and success of our next generation of growers must be prioritized. The U.S. […]

USDA Microloan Program is a Good Fit for Small Family Farms

January 4, 2017

America is a nation of family farmers – nearly half of all production comes from small and medium-sized family farms. Like any small business owner, these farmers occasionally need infusions of relatively small amounts of capital to sustain and grow their operations, but often have trouble accessing funds through traditional lenders because of a lack […]

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