What is the biggest challenge young producers face?

Ag leaders want to discuss how to make young and beginning farmers’ career paths easier.

One of the biggest challenges young producers face is obtaining farm credit.

It is why ag leaders want to discuss ways to make the early career path easier for young and beginning farmers, especially with the 2023 Farm Bill right around the corner.

A young producer from Montana says he understands the frustration because he was denied a micro-loan.

“I applied for a beginning farmer and rancher micro-loan and I was denied despite having a profitable business plan in custom grazing on organic cover crop acreage, primarily because I didn’t have 100 percent collateral to match and my business plan did not involve purchasing land equipment or cattle,” said Paul Neubauer.

Issues like Neubauer’s are the reason USDA created the Beginning Farmers & Ranchers Advisory Committee. Their job is to help young producers working to improve current and future products for the Agency.

Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack says he is focused on making sure programs like crop insurance are affordable for under-served producers.

“It’s why we look at ways in which the crop insurance subsidies can be greater or better for beginning farmers,” said Vilsack.

Experts at Alcorn State University say streamlining federal farm credit programs could happen through the new Farm Bill, which they believe will improve flexibility and transparency when trying to get a loan.