What can new, inexperienced producers expect when they try to start or purchase an operation of their own?
That’s the focus of the New Century Farmers Conference put on by the FFA. The five day event is open to former FFA members, between the ages of 18-24, working on a four year degree. Katherine Smith from Lynden said the intense week in Indianapolis helped her look at what farming in the 21st century is, and more importantly what it could be. She said its important to keep in mind she attended every FFA meeting she could during high school.
“While they were all amazing and I really loved my time in FFA, this blew all of those other conferences out of the water. I think the biggest thing that I took away from it, is that it really is possible to be a young producer.”
Smith said while at New Century Farmers Conference she attended a host of workshops that addressed some of the biggest issues impacting young farmers, such as the ability to get capital, labor, and perhaps issues many don’t consider when looking a the next generation of farmers.
“There’s a lot of isolation sometimes, when working in agriculture. If you’re starting your own operation or working on your family’s operation, you’re often times not interacting with people your own age, or the people your own age that you’re interacting with, don’t really understand agriculture or why you want to go into it.”
Smith said young people interested in a career in production that have an opportunity should attend the New Century Farmers Conference.
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