If you are marketing to young farmers, it is important that you understand their struggles and concerns. After all, you can’t provide the solutions young farmers are looking for if you don’t know what solutions they need.
So what do young farmers view as their biggest challenges? Read on to learn what these farmers list as obstacles to their success.
- Land availability: If a young farmer is not inheriting land, it can be difficult to secure land to rent. This is especially true when they can’t pay the amount of rent others are offering. It is important for young farms to understand that landowners care about more than just money. Young farmers, therefore, need to accentuate their strengths, including things like trustworthiness, desire to improve the land and a commitment to keeping fields and soil healthy.
- No access to capital: Many young farmers lament the fact that they do not have the access to the capital that they need. The solution? Young farmers need to develop the type of business plan that will allow them to merit financing.
- Difficulty speaking with landowners: Dealing with landowners and being able to hold their own in negotiations is a learned skill that takes time to develop. Young farmers need to practice their communication tactics so that they are able to get a fair deal when they sit at the bargaining table.
- Lack of resources: There was a time when young farmers would get significant assistance from government agencies such as the USDA. Budget cuts and other factors mean this type of assistance is no longer available. Today, young farmers need to reach out to other farmers or join agricultural networks that may provide a mentor. Social media also is a good way to reach out to those who can help them.
- Lack of financial know-how: There is nothing wrong with outsourcing some of the business and marketing tasks related to a farm. Many young farmers will need time to figure out how to take care of the business end of their operation. There is no shame in hiring help until you get some experience under your belt.
- Burn out: In an effort to make a go of it in farming, many young farmers work day and night. While being a hard worker is admirable, a balance must be struck. If not, burnout will occur and a farmer’s health and personal relationships may suffer.
- Tension within the family: Many young farmers are taking over the family farm. And while his or her parents are all for passing the farm down, many times it can get sticky when they have a hard time letting go.