Free workshops coming to Upper Valley and Montpelier!
November 15, 2017
6:00–8:00pm at Kilton Library
West Lebanon NH
More and more landowners are making their land available for farming as many NH and VT farmers are looking to rent farmland of all types and sizes. Making land available for farming is one of the most important contributions landowners can make to their community. Leasing land to a farmer helps secure a future for farming in the region, while creating economic opportunity and promoting food security.
This workshop series will help landowners consider this possibility and offer practical resources to take next steps. Landowners will learn how to assess their land and infrastructure, find a compatible farmer, consider liability and tax issues, and craft a lease agreement. Landowners who already make their land available but want to improve the arrangement with their farmer-tenant can also benefit.
By increasing the availability of farmland, non-farming landowners directly contribute to getting more farmers on land, increasing production, and preserving working landscapes. Across New England farm area has declined, from a peak in the mid to late 19th century, and has largely regrown as forest and currently supports expansive forests across over 80 percent of its land base and farmland. More recently, farmland has been replaced by housing and commercial development. (U.S. Agricultural Census, and Wildlands and Woodlands, Farmlands and Communities: Broadening the Vision for New England)
Our region’s support for farming recognizes that farmers are the backbone of the healthy, resilient, sustainable food and farming system that we all seek. And, secure, long-term access to affordable and productive farmland on equitable terms is key to farming success across New England,” says Jim Hafner, Executive Director for Land For Good. “Leasing and other land use arrangements offer win-win solutions for farmers and landowners – and are important tenure arrangements for beginning and established farmers alike.”
Land For Good has helped educate, advise and support thousands of non-farming landowners. They work with farm service providers, conservation organizations and communities to support landowners, increase farmland availability and foster good landowner-farmer agreements. In collaboration with researchers and policy makers, they advance policies and innovative working models that will increase farmland availability and foster equity and land stewardship. Local groups and professionals at the workshop will include: Vital Communities, Vermont Land Trust, Upper Valley Land Trust, Intervale Center, and Land For Good. For more info or to register, call Land For Good at 603-357-1600 or go to landforgood.org/rsvp.
Workshop series is provided with support from The John Merck Fund and the USDA/ NIFA Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program.
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