Kentucky Conference and Young Farmer Visits

The Conference Last week I traveled to Lexington, Kentucky for the American Farmland Trust’s “Farmland, Food and Livable Communities” conference. The conference was the first of its kind to focus on these challenges at the national level and it brought together a broad spectrum of service providers, funders, land trust staff, and young farmers. Farmland conservation has always been about thinking forward and protecting land for future generations, but it was exciting to see that resolve taken a step further at the conference. There were many discussions, both in workshops and informal networking, about how we can ensure we are protecting farmland for future generations of farmers. As NYFC wrote about in our Farmland Conservation 2.0 report, published last year, keeping farmland affordable for farmers is an urgent challenge that the conservation community is well-suited to help address. Many workshops at the conference highlighted programs and strategies that are already being implemented to help ensure the next generation of farmers can access affordable land. Here are a few inspiring examples: Sunny Valley Preserve is a 1,850-acre property owned by The Nature Conservancy in Connecticut. The Conservancy has made a number of capital improvements to the existing farm infrastructure and rents out the 450-tillable acres[...]Read More