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Survey: Young Farmers Ready to Defy Odds
USAgNet - 11/28/2017

The new generation of young farmers expects to overcome major barriers to their success in agriculture, according to a freshly released national survey. Young farmers expect to tackle barriers including access to land, affordable health care, and mounting student loan debt in their quest to farm.

However, the 2017 National Young Farmer Survey says success will require deliberate policy change at all levels of government. Released by the National Young Farmers Coalition, the survey collected data from more than 3,500 young and aspiring farmers under 40 years of age.

The report found that the top challenge cited by young farmers is land access, particularly finding and affording land on a farm income. It is also the main reason why farmers quit farming and why aspiring farmers have not yet started, according to the survey. With the release of the survey, the coalition is calling on Congress to enact a slate of policy reforms it calls the 'Young Farmer Agenda.'

The agenda includes addressing land access, student debt management, and increasing the skilled agricultural workforce. The survey can be found at www.youngfarmers.org.

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