OUR LAND: A Symposium on Farmland Access in the 21st Century
April 26 - 27, 2014
Agrarian Trust, a program of the Schumacher Center for New Economics, is pleased to announce the schedule for the 2014 Symposium. Please join us to join the conversation about farmland access and transition.
In the next 20 years, an estimated 400 million acres of farmland will change hands as 70% of current farmland owners retire. Meanwhile, entering farmers struggle to compete with non-farming landowners for access to prime farmland, particularly in peri-urban areas. This dilemma of farmland succession is shared by Greyhairs and Greenhorns alike, who all hope for a more sustainable and resilient farming future.
The 2014 Symposium will examine this imminent inflection point from historical, ecological and political economy perspectives, and address both practical and philosophical approaches to transition. With both national and international speakers joining to reflect on this topic, we expect a full room and a lively convening of stakeholders.
This event is presented in partnership with Chelsea Green Publishing, The David Brower Center, Berkeley Food Institute, California FarmLink and Roots of Change. All lectures will be recorded as podcasts for farmers and others who cannot make it in person. To get the lectures please join our email list. Please read up on the event details and reserve your ticket today at www.agrariantrust.org/symposium
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About Our Events and Workshops
We specialize in presenting workshops on access to land, farm business planning, farm financing, farm business mentorship, farm succession planning, and farmland conservation strategies. Check back soon to find out about upcoming workshops!
Farm Finance Expos
Loan officers from California FarmLink, local banks and the Farm Service Agency share with participants advice on how to best apply for a loan and what their different loan programs have to offer. California FarmLink staff also discusses alternative financing strategies less commonly used by beginning farmers to pay for equipment/infrastructure or operations.
Business Planning and Farm Financing
This workshop discusses the necessity of a farm business plan, as well as the wide variety of financing options available to farmers. Loan officers from California FarmLink and a variety of other financing institutions share advice on applying for a loan, repairing credit, and establishing a good financial track record. California FarmLink staff also discusses alternative financing strategies less commonly used by beginning farmers to pay for equipment/infrastructure or operations.
Access to Land
California FarmLink staff discuss a plethora of options available to farmers concerning access to land for farming, including a variety of leases and purchase agreements. We cover the importance of securing written agreements and innovative strategies for finding and securing land for a timeline appropriate for each farmer's needs.
Farm Succession Planning
Working with statewide and local professionals to provide sound legal and financial planning advice, this workshop helps farmers and their families understand estate planning and how to plan for their farm?s continued production in the future. This workshop seeks to address the following types of questions:
This workshop is especially useful for farm families who are preparing to transfer the operation to the next generation and for any farmers wanting to plan well for their future.
Win-Win On-Farm Mentorships
Both experienced farmers and beginners have much to learn from each other, and this workshop helps create up formal mentorships with others in their community or on the same farm. Setting up a mentorship agreement is particularly useful to families, where the lines between business communications and family issues can often get blurred. This interactive workshop covers the basics of good communication skills, analysis of each participant's readiness to be mentored or be a mentor, and a sample mentorship contract.