We’re excited to share that the National Young Farmers Coalition (Young Farmers) delivered a letter to House and Senate Agriculture Committee leadership signed by 175 national, regional, and local organizations in support of the Increasing Land Access, Security, and Opportunities Act (H.R.3955, S.2340). Collectively, the organizations and businesses on this letter represent and serve nearly seven million people across the country!
This historic legislation, introduced in the Senate and with bipartisan support in the House, would provide $100 million of annual funding available for community-led land access initiatives through the 2023 Farm Bill. It would be the first farm bill program to provide direct financial support for equitable land access.
We are grateful to the many farmers, partners, Land Advocacy Fellows, Chipotle and our other supporters, who have been a critical part of the One Million Acres for the Future campaign. Through hundreds of meetings with members of Congress, dozens of op-eds and interviews, and countless conversations, your voices have helped envision and shape this legislation, as well as build an irrefutable voice that members of Congress must listen to.
There’s still time to take action! The current farm bill expired on September 30th. As Congress is writing the next farm bill, we need to keep pushing for equitable land access to be at the center and for this legislation. We are continuing to accept sign-ons to the letter and encouraging everyone to help spread the word by using our Partner Action Toolkit.
Shoutout to our Minnesota-based partners at the Land Stewardship Project, the Latino Economic Development Center, and The Good Acre who published a joint op-ed recently on the bill.
Representatives Yadira Caraveo, Gabe Vasquez, Elissa Slotkin, and Brittany Pettersen also introduced the Small Farm Conservation Act (H.R.5354) in the House, a companion to a version introduced in the Senate in June. If passed, this bill will help more farmers implement on-farm conservation practices that will protect our environment and cultivate a more sustainable future.
Farmers should NOT have to choose between meeting their bottom-line and building climate resiliency. Tell Congress to include this legislation in the farm bill!
Want to continue advocating for a brighter future for young and BIPOC farmers? Learn about our other policy priorities like farmer mental health, climate action, and farmer-to-farmer education and how you get involved in shaping the 2023 Farm Bill by visiting our Farm Bill Action Center.
We are excited to invite you to our annual keynote event featuring Dawn Sherman, CEO of Tanka, on December 5th at 6pm ET. We will be discussing the Indigenous roots of regenerative agriculture and celebrating transformation: from the bison’s near extinction to a growing herd, and from policy ideas to direct funding for equitable land access. It will be a conversation you won’t want to miss!
This event is free for solidarity members.
The USDA Discrimination Financial Assistance Program deadline has been extended to January 13, 2024, which farmers can apply for at 22007apply.gov. If they would like more information or require technical assistance, please reach out to our 22007 Technical Assistance Consultant Rachael Stewart at Rachael@youngfarmers.org.
NOMINATIONS ARE OPEN FOR OUR POLICY COMMITTEE
Are you a young farmer who is curious about or already has knowledge about how farm policy impacts your farming experience? Do you have experience with local, regional, or national policies that you find useful, would like to see improved upon, or proposed? If you’ve said yes to any of the above, we invite you to nominate yourself as a candidate for our Policy Committee! Applications are open through December 7, 2023.
YOUNG FARMERS AT THE REGENERATE CONFERENCE
Young Farmers staff members attended Quivira Coalition’s Regenerate Conference 2023 in New Mexico, where New Mexico Organizer Alicia Thompson gave a keynote! We also got to connect with Farm Service Agency (FSA) Administrator Zach Ducheneaux, who we’re excited to continue collaborating with on getting resources out to young farmers and ranchers.
At Cultivemos, the network for farmer mental health, we understand that language justice and access to wellness resources are connected. Our Language Justice Team continues to work within our network to build diverse language access tools to serve our members. This year, we received 50 applications for only 14 spots in our Escuelita, a training on language justice pedagogy, live interpretation, and the tools we can use to put theory into practice. This unprecedented demand shows how important building multilingual spaces are to serving farmers’ mental health needs. While we’ve made great language justice strides within Cultivemos, such as translating written resources and providing Spanish-English interpretation and live text translation for events, we continue to deepen our commitments and practices to ensure that our land stewards are able to connect with the resources they need most.
In the third episode of our six-part farm bill series, we’re joined by Mario Holguin and Julieta Saucedo of La Semilla Food Center and Young Farmers Water Organizer Ana Moran, who explore some of the ways the farm bill can directly address the climate crisis, and what building climate resilience can look like across the Southwest.
From now until the end of the year, Young Farmers members get 30% off Redback Boots! With winter just around the corner, a durable boot for farm chores is a must. When you become a Community Member for only $1 per year, you help us build farm policy that serves the next generation AND get access to a new farm discount every season.
CELEBRATING THE CHAPTERS THAT RECEIVED THE 2023 CHAPTER CAPACITY GRANT
This year, we were pleased to once again partner with Muck Boots to offer grants to our Chapters to support their organizing efforts. Ten chapters were selected to be recipients and also received fundraising support to help them build long-term financial sustainability.
DO YOU OR A FARMER YOU KNOW SELL PRODUCTS ONLINE?
We are requesting submissions for our Young Farmers Gift Guide to amplify gifts and goods made by and for our network of young and BIPOC farmers. Send Johnna@youngfarmers.org your favorite items to be considered in our Young Farmers Gift Guide by November 20, 2023!
WELCOME NEW STAFF!
We’re excited to welcome Colorado Organizer Zara Šaponja to the Young Farmers team! Read more about our staff and their work here.
YOUNG FARMERS IN THE HEADLINES
Co-Executive Director Michelle Hughes spoke with Food Tank about giving young farmers a seat at the table
Board President Roberto Meza writes about the role young farmers can play in fighting climate change
Cultivemos Coordinator Míchi López discusses how our food system affects farmer mental health
Water Fellowship Coordinator Megan Daley writes about water access in the Southwest and advocacy