Farm and Food

Resources, ideas and strategies for new and diversifying farmers and those interested in the comeback of the family farm

Whether your family has been farming or ranching for generations or you're just beginning a farm career, the Center for Rural Affairs has resources to help you grow a successful farm business.

Beginning Farmer and Rancher Opportunities

New farmers and ranchers have unique needs. The Center for Rural Affairs offers resources and support to help beginning farmers and ranchers start successful farm careers.
 
Land Matching - Farm transfers between retiring farmers and a new generation of beginners are a great way to preserve family farms and help beginners break into farming and ranching.

Veteran Farmers Project

In the last 10 years, almost a million of our military’s servicemen and servicewomen have come from rural communities. As these veterans return home, they bring with them an opportunity to employ their passion, discipline, and sense of service to revitalize America’s small farms and rural communities. Learn more about our training and support programs for veteran farmers.

Women Farmers

The Center for Rural Affairs is partnering with Women, Food, and Agriculture Network (WFAN) to help aspiring and beginning women farmers turn their farming dreams into reality through training and mentorships with established women farmers. Learn more about upcoming opportunities for women farmers.

Farm Finances

Farms are businesses, and as with any business, sound financial planning is crucial to success. Considering your farm finances is especially important for beginners getting started and for landowners considering farm transfers.

High Value Markets

One key to having a viable small-scale farm is producing a high-value product. Customers will pay more for non-generic, non-commodity products that make are unique to your farm. These products return a higher profit to your farm business. 

Additional Farming Programs and Resources

Learn about additional resources available to help your farm grow and thrive.

Farm and Food Notes

 

Local and Regional Food Systems in Nebraska: Best Practices and Case Studies

Outlines best practices for developing local and regional food systems in the state. First-hand information came from interviews we conducted with individuals, organizations, and institutions involved in the production, marketing, and usage of local food. They are docmented through nine case studies.

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Regional Food Systems in Nebraska: Report on Consumer, Producer, and Institutional Focus Groups

In February 2013, the Center for Rural Affairs (CFRA) released a report Regional Food Systems in Nebraska: The Views of Consumers, Producers and Institutions, analyzing the results of a survey responded to by Nebraskans on local food system issues.

After the survey was completed, CFRA held a series of focus groups for each of the project relevant groups – consumers, producers, food-serving institutions and grocery stores. This supplemental report provides findings and observations from those focus groups.

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Learning Circle Expands Horizons for Women Farmers and Ranchers

Contributed by Ash Bruxvoort, a freelance writer, marketer, and beginning farmer in Mitchellville, Iowa.

More than 40 women gathered at the Prairie Plate Restaurant on Lakehouse Farm in Waverly, Nebraska, on August 5. We were there to network, share stories, and learn about resources available to beginning women farmers and ranchers.

A great mix of women attended the event. They included women who were already farming, women who were interested in buying land, and women who had never farmed before.

Planning for Nebraska’s Food Future

By Mark Winne

After over 40 years of food policy work, I find it incomprehensible that in 21st century America the rates of food insecurity and hunger remain so persistently high. Over 13% of Nebraskans may skip meals so their children can eat, or may not know where their next meal is coming from!

Land of Milk and Uncle Honey

The Center for Rural Affairs welcomes syndicated agricultural columnist Alan Guebert and his daughter Mary Grace Foxwell to our corner of the world. The father/daughter duo will read from their recently released book The Land of Milk and Uncle Honey at several locations and dates across Iowa  and Nebraska starting this week.