Monday morning kickoff: where to buy farmland?

Agriculture is confronting a crisis that has little to do with drought, milk prices, or climate change.  Farmers are getting older.  The average age for a farmer in New York is 56.

Young farmers at a gathering in Tarrytown, NY in 2009. Photo: NYFO

Benjamin Shute, co-founder of the National Young Farmer Coalition, said in a New York Times Op-Edthat the good news is the local food movement has attracted a new generation of farmers fired up to reshape and reinvigorate agriculture.  The thing is, they need help.

To reverse this course, our country must take bold action to ensure that aspiring farmers have access to land, health care, capital, education and training. Congress should invest now in a farm bill that helps young Americans enter into and succeed in farming, and that creates incentives for diversified and sustainable agriculture.

A consortium of farm groups in New England has launched this site that helps people find farmland to buy (and helps people sell their land).  It just covers New England, and there aren't too many listings, but it's a handy way to see what's available.

This New York Times article highlights the challenges young farmers face in buying land in Upstate New York.  It would be great to see a similar farm-finder for New York.

Anybody know of one?  Where would you go to find available land for farming in New York?

 

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2 Comments

  1. New York Farm link is another source: http://adkfarmerdan.com/cultivating-coincidences/ – I wrote about this topic on my blog.

  2. I totally disagree with the notion that farming is in trouble because of the age of farmers. If you take a look at the operations which are growing and prospering there is almost always some young farmers involved. This is true with both small and large farms. Likewise, if you attend a conference, seminar or tour you will find a wide range of ages among the farmers participating. I will grant that the increasing price of real estate can be a barrier to new entries, making it necessary to partner with an established operation or find a more creative enterprise than commodity production.