Farmers considering producing an unique, niche product must learn what products are profitable, which products have market potential, and what crops will generate income without depleting the land and environment. To accomplish this, business, marketing and agriculture education are needed, and resources and support systems—preferably centrally located—are needed for each type of education.
The 2007 Farm Bill should amend the Federal Crop Insurance Act to include within the existing risk management education and partnerships programs a special emphasis on risk management strategies and education and outreach specifically targeted at beginning farmers and ranchers, immigrant farmers and ranchers who are attempting to become established producers in this country, farmers and ranchers who are preparing to retire and are using transition strategies to help new farmers and ranchers get started, and new and established farmers and ranchers who are converting their production and marketing systems to pursue new markets. In addition, language should provide for an emphasis on modifying or adapting the actual risk management tools to the unique needs of beginning and socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers.
View the Center for Rural Affairs' report "Giving a Beginner a Chance in the 2007 Farm Bill", http://www.cfra.org/policy/2007/beginningfarmer.