Farmers, ranchers get helping hand to succeed
Helping beginning farmers and ranchers succeed is important to many Nebraska organizations.
The 100 Cow College administered by the University of Nebraska College of Technical Agriculture and the West Central Research and Extension Center was held in May in Curtis.
The Cow/Calf College includes information on how to increase profitability, manage herd health, and use the latest technology to succeed in cow/calf production.
For Jon Broham of Callaway, participation made it possible to buy into the family ranch. Broham enrolled in the 100 Cow Program and obtained a loan at 1.75% interest to buy 100 head of cattle. He received an operating loan for his first year through the Farm Service Agency.
Broham benefited from having access to family land, but many beginners must find land to rent or purchase. The high cost of land makes the dream of owning their own operations unattainable.
Recognizing this need, the Center for Rural Affairs created Land Link to match beginning farmers with retiring farmers and landowners. The Land Link database contains over 200 beginners who want to get started in agriculture.
With more landowners, Land Link could easily increase the number of young farmers. Landowners and beginners work together to find an arrangement that works for them, and many landowners lease or sell only part of their land to a beginner. Land Link is a perfect companion to the 100 Beef Cow Outreach Program. Other tax credits help too.