New and retiring farmers can benefit from Beginning Farmer Tax Credit

Farm and Food

Ask any beginning farmer or rancher about the greatest challenge to starting an operation, and the most common answer is access to land and operational assets.

A program aimed at helping new producers get a head start, while giving back to farmers and ranchers ready to pass on assets, may be able to help. 

Through Nebraska’s Beginning Farmer Tax Credit Act, administered as part of the NextGen program, asset owners can earn state income tax credit each year, for three years, when they rent land or agriculture assets to approved beginning farmers.

The amount of the tax credit depends on the terms of the lease, either a 10% credit of the cash rent each year for three years or a 15% credit of the value of the sharecrop rent or cow/calf share rent each year for three years. A three-year minimum lease is required.

In addition, a qualified beginning farmer is eligible for a separate personal property tax exemption, up to $100,000, for personal property used in production agriculture.

This program is a great opportunity for a landowner looking to transition to a beginning farmer or rancher and ensure their land remains in responsible production. For the new operator, this benefit means more opportunity to rent land, develop a relationship with a landowner, and build a foundation for a long-term business.

By proactively bringing them together with retiring farmers, NextGen has given beginning farmers and ranchers across the state the tools they need to level the playing field. For many it’s also afforded them the opportunity to return home to assist in the expansion of family operations. 

Applications for the program and credit are due Nov. 1. For more information, visit