If you live in the country or in the city…….Montana Farmers Union is right for you. The Montana Farmers Union is a statewide grassroots organization working for family farmers, ranchers and rural communities through conferences, scholarships and other educational opportunities as well as legislative representation and support for producer-owned co-ops.
For details on Arrowpeak Summer Camp & to register click here. Camp scholarships are available to members/nonmembers. Contact camp director Kathryn Peterson at 781-6001 for details.
Meet Montana Farmers Union 2016 Scholarship Winners!
Reaching Out to New Farmers on National Agriculture Day Public News Service – MT | March 2016 Suzanne Potter, Public News Service
Montana farmers Jeff and Katie Bangs are working to attract more young people to agriculture. (Katie Bangs) March 15, 2016 GREAT FALLS, Mont. – Today is National Agriculture Day, part of National Ag Week – a time to recognize the contributions farmers make across the country and here in Montana. Agriculture is the leading industry in the state, with almost 28,000 farms and ranches covering close to 60 million acres. But ag’s future in Montana is uncertain, since farmers’ average age is 58, closing in on retirement. Jeff Bangs, who raises cattle and grows small grains and pulse crops in Inverness, said things have recently gotten tougher for new farmers. “Due to low prices and high input costs, it’s gotten more difficult this last year or two,” he said. “Maybe the flow of young people back to the farm is going to slow down again. It was a pretty good increase from 2010 to ’15, and I fear that maybe we’re going to see a little less in the next four to five years.” Bangs praised the 2014 federal farm bill for expanding such efforts as the Transition Incentive Program, which gives retiring farmers extra payments to lease land to new producers. He said he also favors a program that gives young producers a higher per-acre guarantee in crop insurance in the first five years. “I think anything you can do to give those people just starting out a leg up early in the process is well worth doing and will pay off, you know,” he said, “hopefully by allowing them to stay on the farm long-term.” The Montana Farmers Union is holding its annual “Young Producers” conference April 1-2 in Havre. Information is on the group’s website, montanafarmersunion.com/young-producers-conference.
|Arrowpeak Camp||Registration Opens April 18||Arrowpeak Camp|
|Beginning Farmer Institute Application Due||April 31||NFU/Website|
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Attendees at Young Producer Conference tour Northern Ag Research Center Livestock Operations
Cows at Northern Ag Research Center/ Young Producer Conference