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National Young Farmers Coalition backs new Farm Bill proposals

Proposals emphasize sustainable farming and equitable land access, aligning closely with NYFC’s goals.

Sunny Soybean Field Growing

The National Young Farmers Coalition (NYFC) expressed support for the new visions outlined by U.S. Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow and House Agriculture Committee Chairman Glenn G.T. Thomson for the upcoming Farm Bill. On May 1, 2024, Stabenow introduced the Rural Prosperity and Food Security Act of 2024, emphasizing sustainable farming and equitable land access. Thomson is expected to release a detailed draft of the House Farm Bill later in May, with a committee markup scheduled for May 23.

The NYFC praised the Senate’s proposed measures, which align closely with their 2022 Young Farmer Agenda. These measures include enhancing land access and capital for new and underserved farmers, expanding investment in conservation practices and farmer mental health, and improving participation in federal farm programs.

Specifically, the Senate’s bill proposes to increase the loan cap for microloans, permanently authorize key conservation programs, and amend eligibility criteria to ease land transitions for new farmers. It also aims to bolster climate action through farming with increased funding for conservation programs and initiatives supporting greenhouse gas reduction.

Michelle Hughes, Co-Executive Director of the NYFC, highlighted the importance of these proposals in addressing the needs of young and BIPOC farmers, ensuring they can contribute to a sustainable food system. Jane Kaminski, a young farmer advocate, added that secure land tenure is crucial for the next generation of farmers, emphasizing the ongoing land access crisis.

As discussions continue, the NYFC remains committed to advocating for the priorities of young farmers to ensure the final Farm Bill provides the necessary support for a sustainable and equitable agricultural future.

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