USDA Speaks to Beginning Farmers

US Department of Agriculture undersecretary Michael Scuse recently spoke to a collection of young farmers, urging them to remain committed to the farm sector.

For the past several years, farmers in the country have struggled with a major demographic crisis. With fewer young farmers entering the profession, retiring farmers have no one to replace them. As a result, the average age of American farmers is increasing (some states have an average farm age reaching 60).

USDA officials are pushing young farmers to take a more direct role in farm production. “We want to let young producers know that their voice is important and they shouldn’t be hesitant or bashful about communicating with policymakers,” said Gordon Stone, executive vice president of the National Young Farmer Educational Association.

“We need to work together to make agriculture strong, to make rural America strong, so that when we speak, our voice is heard,” said Scuse. “That’s the message we are trying to get out. That’s the message we would ask all of you to get out.”

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Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer