The Columbia Land Conservancy (CLC) is working with the Dutchess Land Conservancy (DLC) to expand its Farmer Landowner Match program into Dutchess County. The program, which previously focused solely on Columbia County, facilitates lease agreements between landowners seeking to have their land farmed and farmers seeking land.
High real estate costs make it difficult for farmers to purchase farmland and farm leasing is one strategy to help increase access to farmland. Leasing enables farmers to start and expand their operations with significantly less capital and risk.
Thanks to CLC’s Farmer Landowner Match Program I have been able to add significantly to my grazing acreage and thereby to continue to expand our cattle and sheep numbers. The two owners I work with are a great match for me because they were prepared to give long term leases and very much support having grazing animals on their land.
farmer Jerry Peele CONTINUE READING
ABC News ran a story about the challenges to young farmers and how CLC developed the Farmer Landowner Match Program.
READ THE ARTICLE
CLC works to ensure that agriculture remains a dynamic part of Columbia County’s identity and economy, and our work has been getting attention. There is particular interest in CLC’s Farmer Landowner Match Program, which is one way to address the obstacle of high land prices. In the past few months, Marissa Codey, CLC’s Conservation and Agricultural Programs Manager, has presented across the region. Her next appearance is on September 9 in North Chatham along with a film about new farmers. CONTINUE READING
Columbia County, NY has a vibrant farm history – the farmland at Sparrowbush Farm in Hudson, NY has been farmed since 1853. Generations of farmers have grown crops and fruit on the farm’s rich, fertile soil. While Sparrowbush Farm is continuing the farming legacy, the farmer, Ashley Loehr, isn’t part of the Palatine and Tinklepaugh families that farmed the land for over a hundred years. Her fifty-one acre farm, Sparrowbush Farm, is located on the land as part of a five-year lease agreement that Loehr has with the landowner.
Loehr is a participant in the CLC’s Farmer Landowner Match Program. The Program connects landowners looking to have their land farmed with farmers seeking land.
The economics of farming has changed and farmland is disappearing. The Farmer Landowner Match Program helps farmers adapt to the new conditions and provides land access options that enable local working farms to become economically viable.
Marissa Codey, CLC’s Conservation and Agricultural Programs Manager CONTINUE READING
CLC’s Conservation and Agricultural Programs Manager Marissa Codey will be presenting at the upcoming Farming Our Future Conference. She will be discussing the challenges young farmers face finding land on which to farm, and the various strategies they might use to locate land. The conference takes place on Saturday, February 25 in Craryville, NY.
The Capital Region Economic Development Council has released their strategic plan. We have advocated for working farms to play a prominent role in the plan. We are excited to see the document includes agriculture. The document also suggests a program similar to our Farmer Landowner Match Program.
In 2010, the US imported 164.4 million pounds of “fresh garlic” and garlic imports continue to rise. However, in 2012 there will be a hundred or so people in the Hudson Valley who will be getting fresh local garlic from Great Song Farm in Milan, NY. This fall, Great Song is completing its first growing season and is planting a plot of garlic to be harvested next year.
The farmers at Great Song don’t own the land where they are planting their garlic and their other vegetables. They obtained the use of the property through CLC’s Farmer Landowner Match Program. CONTINUE READING