Hello again, friends!
In our local FSA office we are always receiving phone calls from people that want to start farming, or want to get involved in local food markets or just want to know where to go to get information on the web.
Today, I am going to give to great places to find a great array of information on the web.
The first is The Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food (KYF2) initiative is a USDA-wide effort focused on strengthening local and regional food systems.
The second is the USDA website that provides information for beginning farmers, women in agriculture and veterans.
In recent years, consumers have shown an increased interest in purchasing locally-produced foods and many farmers and ranchers followed the trend and offer fresh foods through local markets.
USDA followed suit, developing KYF2, which helps connect consumers with producers in their community. USDA offers a wide range of programs that can assist farmers, ranchers, businesses, communities and individuals.
To learn more about grants, loans and support that is available, visit USDA.
These USDA programs stimulate economic development in agricultural communities, foster new opportunities for farmers and ranchers, promote locally and regionally grown and processed foods, cultivate healthy eating habits and educated consumers.
They also expand access to affordable fresh and local food and develop a connection between food, agriculture, community and the environment.
Find more information on KYF2 here.
One of the points of emphasis that the Department of Agriculture has been stressing the past few Farm Bills is the availability of resources for beginning farmers, minority farmers, limited resource farmers and also women farmers.
To help achieve this goal, USDA has rolled out a new website geared to producers who are just getting started in farming or who need suggestions to help map out a plan of action, USDA New Farmers is now active and available to use.
This site provides many tools to new farmers, women in agriculture and veterans to help you get started in the right direction. It takes you through steps of evaluating your operation, identifying resources and making the connections needed to be successful.
Visitors to the page can also obtain information available to women in agriculture and young farmers as well as veteran farmers. There is also a link called Farms in Transition to provide basic information to operations going through changes.
USDA New Farmers is a very informative and interesting site, even to operations that have been in business for a long time.
No password is needed for access or account to be set up to visit this site. If you get a chance, please take the time to look it over. Even for the seasoned farmer, it can’t hurt to check out the above websites to see what all is out there.
Look out for next week’s FSA Andy discussion where we will talk about the new 2017 forage acreage reporting deadline of Nov. 15 and the important reminder that your 2017 wheat acreage reports need to be done by Dec. 15. Until then, be safe out there in the fields!
That’s all for now,
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