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Farmer Livelihood

 
 

Sustainability starts with the farmer and their family. Working to make sure that producers have the means to live, and live well, is unquestionably integral to the health of our supply chain and rural communities.

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KPI: Number of acres transitioned receiving FPP support (financing, agronomy, community)

 
 
 

Resilience Through Diversity

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Diversifying production systems and income streams can lead to more resilient farming operations capable of withstanding the highs and lows of seasonal weather and unpredictable markets. Transitioning to organic production is a diversification strategy that holds promise for increased profitability, farmer diversity, farmer and farm laborer safety, more stable markets, vital rural communities, and an increased likelihood of successful farm transfer to the next generation. Penn State Agricultural Economist Dr. Edward Jaenicke found that Organic Hotspots boost household incomes and reduce poverty levels, a phenomenon that farm country needs now more than ever. (1)


 
 

The Farm Profit Program brings the organic opportunity within reach

Through providing financial tools, valuable agronomic and certification consultation, engaging educational content, and organic inputs, farmers not only see the opportunity but are able to pursue organic certification and access the organic marketplace. Our lending partners make transition loans available to farmers needing financing or working capital to purchase equipment or retool their operations. We’re able to educate producers about organic crop insurance programs and make introductions to insurance experts and brokers that can lead the way to decreased risk. Extended contracts can unlock financing, decrease marketing costs, and allow a farmer to focus on farming – our long-term off-take agreements are always an option for any organic grower.

It goes without saying that there’s a learning curve that a transitioning farmer navigates on their way to certified organic production. Our in-house transition consultant can answer questions and provide resources to increase confidence and ability, and farmers can find a skilled organic agronomist using our agronomist referral network if more support is needed. Producers can also access our educational resources – podcasts, video series, printed guides – to optimize their organic operations or prepare for transition. We also provide many of the inputs, from seed to pelletized poultry manure, that a farmer will need.

 
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Financial Resources

For farmers who are just starting to explore organic, we have developed a crop-budgeting tool ground-proofed by region, to assist in modeling the potential and timing associated with increasing financial returns.

For farmers ready to pull the trigger and start transitioning ground – whether it be the first or the thousandth acre- we partner with lending institutions to make transition loans available to farmers needing financing or working capital. We are also working with insurance companies to educate producers about crop insurance strategies and products well-suited for farming operations that include transitioning and organic land, thereby leading the way to decreased risk. Our long-term off-take agreements can help unlock financing, decrease marketing costs, and allow a farmer to focus on farming.


Educational Resources and Inputs

It goes without saying that there’s a learning curve that a transitioning farmer navigates on their way to certified organic production. Our in-house transition consultant can answer questions and provide resources to increase confidence and ability, and farmers can find a skilled organic agronomist using our agronomist referral network, if more support is needed. Producers can also access our educational resources – podcasts, video series, printed guides – to optimize their organic operations or prepare for transition. We also provide many of the inputs, from seed to pelletized poultry manure, that a farmer will need.