Who will be farming next? What are their thoughts and concerns? These questions and more are dealt with in a new white paper published by YI Advisors. The paper was presented during last week’s FarmNext Summit in Washington, DC.
I spoke with Tom Allison, Associate Director of Research for YI Advisors to learn more about the FarmNext Initiative and the white paper.
To obtain the information for the white paper YI Advisors gathered Millennials entering farming and agribusiness for a series of conversations around the country to discuss trends shaping the future of their industry. They did this because of concerns about aging primary operators and other reasons like polarizing conversations about the origins of food. Key findings came in four main topics: Technology & Innovation; Economics; Workforce & Education and Public Perception. Here are just a few of the findings. As you might expect young farmers are driving technological change. Access to capital was consistently cited as a major barrier to successfully entering the industry. Colleges need to reform curriculums to be more interdisciplinary, reflecting the reality of modern farming. And finally, the media and industry need to do a better job of telling young farmers’ stories.
You can download the FarmNext Report here (pdf).
Tom talks about the whole process and where to go from here because the findings of their work shows a lot more needs to be done.
Listen to this week’s ZimmCast here: ZimmCast about FarmNext