Feature Presentation: "Leasing Land to a New Small Farmer"
Interviews with new farmers, landowners, and other agricultural experts shed light on the benefits of leasing land to small, diversified farmers.
New Farmer Issues
Partnership Resources
Learn more about participating new farmer service providers.

The Partnership produces a variety of publications that serve new farmers and the organizations that support them.

Publications include books, news and scholarly articles, and multimedia presentations.

Matt Russell, "Assembling Success," Delivered at The Drake Forum (March, 2010). Assembling Success Slide

The New Farmer Fund

A critical obstacle facing efforts to support new farmers concerns the funding and institutional support of the organizations taking leading roles in this work. The New Farmer Fund is a social marketing prototype designed to provide consumer-oriented and market driven funding to support a wide range of innovative training, education, land access, and equity building programs for new farmers.

Click here for more details, eligibilty requirements, and an application.

Access to Capital

Closely related to the issue of land access is funding. Financial assistance is a common way organizations seek to help new farmers. However, funding often does not match the level of financing needed. Fortunately, there are a number of ways organizations can expand their resources to provide greater assistance.

Click here to discover information on beginning farmer grants, loans, Individual Development Accounts (IDAs), and more.

Access to Land

Gaining access to land is one of the greatest challenges faced by new farmers. There are, however, diverse mechanisms for gaining access to land and a number of agencies and organizations dedicated to assisting new farmers with this endeavor.

Click here for additional information on specific land access issues and links to relevant organizations.

Access to Markets

Farmers, of course, must sell the products they grow and produce. For farmers looking to start a conventional farm operation, this does not pose much of a problem. However, farmers producing niche products or selling directly to consumers and retailers may have a more difficult time reaching the market.

Click here to learn more about how new farmer organizations promote local and niche markets.

Access to Knowledge

Farming is more than putting a few seeds in the ground or some cattle out to pasture and watching them grow. It takes a lot of hard work and knowledge.

Click here to find out more about developing and promoting education programs, farm incubators, internships, mentor programs, and more.

Search by State

New Farmer challenges and opportunities vary by region, and so to do many of the organizations serving New Farmers. Local and state policy also plays an important role in promoting new farmers.

Click here to search new farmer issues and resources by state.

Search by Type of Farm

Its not easy to categorize types of farms, and for good reason. Farming can be a diverse enterprise relying on a variety of activities and revenue. However, many groups specialize in assisting farmers in particular endeavors, such as urban agriculture or organic production.

Click to access new farmer issues categorized by type of farming.
Search by Demographic Served

Resources and organizations often focus on assisting a specific demographic. The demographic groups can be as broad as women farmers or as specific as teaching convicts horticultural skills.

Click here for to view new farmer issues categorized by demographic.

Welcome to the Partnership

Providing information, funding, and networking opportunities for America's New Farmer Organizations

Become a Member

Explore the categories to the right to learn more about issues facing new farmers, find links to other new farmer institutions, and access resources that can help organizations better assist new farmers.

The information and links are organized by issue, type of farming, and geographic region.

  • Support
  • About
  • Contact Us

RMA logoFinancial support for the Partnership for America's New Farmers comes from the Amy P. Goldman Foundation and USDA's Risk Management Agency.

Drake logoFounded in 1983 and directed by Neil Hamilton, The Drake Agricultural Law Center at Drake University Law School is internationally recognized for providing opportunities to study how the legal system shapes our food system and influences the ability of the agricultural sector to produce, market and utilize agricultural products. The Drake Law School supports an array of courses, publications, conferences, and research initiatives and created a certification program in food and agricultural law.

The Partnership for America's New Farmers promotes the development of financial, technical, and orgnizational resources for diverse institutions that share the common goal of assisting new farmers. To accomplish this, the information contained here necessarily encompasses a variety of approaches to aid new farmers and addresses the need for diverse agricultural endeavors. The resources are organized into categories based upon the type of new farmer assistance, types of farms or approaches to farming, and geographic areas. The site also provides historical information and multimedia resources.

Agricultural Law Center

Drake University Law School

2621 Carpenter AvenueNeil Hamilton

Des Moines, IA 50311

Neil Hamilton, Director:

  • (515) 271-2065
  • neil.hamilton@drake.edu Matt Russell

Matt Russell, State Food Policy Project Coordinator:

  • (515) 271-4956
  • matthew.russell@ drake.edu

Ed Cox, Staff Attorney:Ed Cox

  • (417) 496-2353
  • edward.cox@drake.edu