Join Land For Good and National Young Farmers' Coalition for a tour of several online resources designed to help you find and assess farmland and then explore resources to determine your financial readiness to acquire farmland. We will discuss strategies to help farmers prepare for a farmland search, ways to look for farmland, and explore tools for evaluating farmland opportunities. The discussion will focus on tools and resources that farm seekers can utilize in their farmland search process. We will also provide a demonstration about how farmers can use the Finding Farmland Calculator to estimate the costs of acquiring and owning farmland. We will also provide an overview of the Finding Farmland Course, a companion resource that can help farmers learn about concepts related to farmland access and financial planning.
Jae Silverman is the Massachusetts Field Agent with Land For Good, working with farmers and landowners on issues of farmland access, tenure, and transfer. Jae is also a first-generation hay farmer, owning and operating Windrow Farm in Conway, MA, and is passionate about the contribution of grass farming to the local food and fiber system.
Michael (Mike) Parker is a first generation farmer, currently starting up a grassfed beef enterprise in Cooperstown, NY. He also coordinates a farm viability grant program for the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources, and is part of the founding team of Farm Generations Cooperative, the co-op behind GrownBy, an e-commerce app for direct-marketing farms. From 2017 - 2021, he led several land access and business services projects for the National Young Farmers Coalition, including the Finding Farmland program.
- Presentation from Land For Good
- Farm Access Methods – A Decision Guide (walks through various farm access methods)
- Identifying Farm Search Priorities (necessary, desirable, optional)
- New England Farmland Finder – regional listings site that posts farmland opportunities; you can subscribe to receive notifications of new properties.
- Google My Maps – how to assess acreage of properties of interest; Land For Good developed a Google My Maps tutorial on how to develop and measure acreage maps.
- Guide for Landowners
- Presentation by Mike Parker showcasing resources from National Young Farmers’ Coalition
- Farm Real Estate Transactions Step-by-Step – guide walks through the purchasing of farmland process
- USDA Farm Service Agency Loan Guide – discusses each of the USDA FSA loan programs including the farm and home loan program
- Land Trust Alliance – provides links to land trusts across the country who may support farmland access
- Land Link Directory (2019) – a guide to land linking programs across the country
- Suggested Business Planning Resources (from Q&A)
- New Entry Sustainable Farming Project offers an 8-week online Farm Business Planning Course
- The Carrot Project offers business planning trainings and resources
- AgPlan is an online farm business plan development tool
- Grazecart – is an online sales platform (direct mail order e-commerce) for producers, but they also have a blog, a “Grazecast”/Podcast”, and offer business advice and online trainings.
- CSA Innovation Network –They host a CSA Idea’s Lab to support development of CSA business models, they also have a video series and resources
- The Farmers’ Office Online Training – offers a full lineup of video courses around running a profitable business
- Search for a FSA Certified Borrow Training Program (there are many of them across the country – including New Entry, Carrot, and Farmers’ Office)