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Farmers Connect with Resources to Gain Ground in the Manchester Area

Farmers and service providers will gather in the Manchester area to explore strategies to get onto farmland and overcome other top challenges facing beginning farmers.

According to the recently released results of the 2012 USDA Census of Agriculture, New Hampshire and other New England states are bucking a national trend by increasing their number of farms and land in farms. This session responds to the surging interest in farming as described in the new report, Northeast Agriculture: 2014 Insights and Perspectives by Farm Credit East.

At the April 24, 2014 Farmland Access Information Night in Bedford, NH, new farmers seeking to buy or lease land will connect with their local advisors. Professionals in the local farming community will answer questions about how to plan, evaluate, and buy or lease farm property, qualify for funding, and understand conservation easements, owner financing options, and much more.

“Access to farmland is a top obstacle for new and beginning farmers. They need to know where to turn for help and resources in their community, to start building their networks and social capital. These events accelerate that process,” says Melissa Benedikt Blindow, owner and operator of Benedikt Dairy, a small-scale dairy in Goffstown, New Hampshire. Melissa is also the NH Field Agent of Land For Good, a non-profit organization that helps ensure the future of farming in New England by putting more farmers more securely on more land.

“This session is a chance to hear some typical but also unique challenges in looking for land, funding and other issues, talk solutions and share resources in order to build a more resilient farming community,” says Ray Conner, Beginning Farmer Coordinator for Northeast Organic Farming Association of New Hampshire.

Along with finding farmland, topics will include purchase, lease and financing options, leasing or taking over a retiring farmer’s operation, as well as expanding your network for increased knowledge, connection and profit. The Farmland Access Information Night will take place on April 24, 2014 from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. at Keller Williams Realty, 168 South River Road, Bedford, NH. Reserve your seat!

Hear from these professionals: Michael Hvizda, Keller Williams Realty Metro; Melissa Blindow, Land For Good; Amy Manzelli, BCM Environmental & Land Law, PLLC; Ray Conner, Northeast Organic Farming Association of NH; Charlene Andersen, NH Community Loan Fund; Farm Service Agency; Ian McSweeney, Russell Foundation; Daimon Meeh, UNH Cooperative Extension; Michael McPhail, Farm Credit East; Chad Cochrane, NRCS, Cara Cargill, NH Agricultural Mediation Service.

Co-sponsored by Keller Williams Realty, Land For Good, and Northeast Organic Farming Association of NH.

Space is limited! For more information or to reserve a seat, contact Land For Good at (603)357-1600 or visit www.landforgood.org/rsvp.

Support for this event is provided in part by a grant to Land For Good from the Thomas W. Haas Fund of the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation.

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