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  • Brad Wilson

    Another piece of the history of this is the attack on the farm bill by agribusiness and other corporations. They called for reducing Price Floors and supply management in order to run 1/3 of farmers out of business within five years. That was in 1962, and the "Farm Justice Movement" fought back over the decades, calling out for help from consumers, taxpayers, (no subsidies are needed with the good farm commodity programs,) eaters. Then Congress did what agribusiness wanted, but over about 8 years, as farmers fought back, mostly alone, and unsuccessful. Then they wanted more and more, and congress gave them more and more, until the Price Floor programs were ended in 1996. The older farmers of the Farm Justice or Family Farm Movement can teach younger people about all of this. Unfortunately, the food movement knows little of this history or of the needed policies. In fact, mere subsidy reforms, the dominant policies that are supposed to address this today, are worse than what corporations called for in 1962! It's a shame that the needed policies are not known. Fortunately, this history is introduced to the new movement in Wenonah Hauter's book Foodopoly, in chapter 1. The 1962 report (CED, An Adaptive Program for Agriculture,) also called for programs to get farm youth to move away. Cf. "Women of Farm Justice" "Highlights of Family Farm Justice: 1950-2000" and "A Graphic Illustration of Farm Bill History."

  • Alessandra Rizzotti

    There are some amazing farms like Pie Ranch, that teach younger generations of farmers how to grow productive gardens. http://www.pieranch.org/ I've met some younger farmers in Northern California- and it's interesting to see how they're making the occupation cool now.

  • adelwyn

    Interesting question, identification of some of the issues, and putting forth of solutions. One should also consider the possibility of reducing further barriers to entry including the stigmatism associated with youth and experience, reducing the cost of capital, and lowering the risks imposed by external organizations. In addition to this, we could seek to further promote greater enrollment in university and technical level training and development programmes.

    • Jesse McDougall

      Hi Adelwyn! Great points. I would particularly love to see a resurgence of technical training.