Here is a telling article concerning the future of family farming entitled: “Agriculture struggles with lack of young farmers.” The article sadly reports:
The economics of running a farm in today’s agricultural markets are such that it’s difficult to make a profit unless you’re operating on a massive scale. That’s caused a lot of young people to throw up their hands and walk away. . .
The average age of farmers nationally is 55.3 years old. . . More than a quarter of all farmers, and about half of all agricultural landlords, are age 65 or older, compared with about 3 percent of the overall labor force.
One farmer, whose family has owned his farm since the 30’s reported: “My kids will probably sell out to a corporate farm, eventually”
I have made restoration of family farming a primary plank of my campaign. Because food production represents an essential element of a resilient economy, these trends should give us all great pause.
P.S. On an encouraging note though, Future Farmers of America set a record enrollment this past year with 520,000 members. (The previous high of 509,000 was in the 1970’s.)