Mr. Don Takes a Look at the Family Farming Tradition

Don Harden looks at the statistics generated by AgAmerica’s survey on the multigenerational family farming tradition.

In my April column in Central Florida Ag News, I wrote about the importance of the family farming tradition in America. The 2012 Census of Agriculture counted 2.1 million farms in the U.S, with 97 percent being considered family-owned operations. The lion’s share of our food and fiber comes from family farming operations, so it’s no wonder that the image of the multigenerational farming businesses is one that many family farmers hold in high esteem.

In the ag industry, the number of farming generations we count in our families is a source of great pride, and the thought of our children and grandchildren inheriting the farm and filling our boots is a sustaining one. While there are many statistics on family agriculture, there are few on the details of the family farming tradition. In 2015, AgAmerica conducted a survey of hundreds of growers, and compiled the results in the whitepaper Families and Their Farms: Planning for the Future. Explore our findings on the family farming tradition below. Read More

Don Harden on University-Level Ag Education Programs

AgAmerica’s Don Harden discusses university-level ag education programs in Florida.

In my March column in Central Florida Ag News, I wrote about the great ag education programs in Florida at the college and university level, and the fact that many of them offer FFA and 4-H programs. See examples and the benefits of these programs below.Read More

Don Harden on Water and Ag Land Values

When assessing ag land values, water is a major factor.

In my latest column in Central Florida Ag News magazine, I relay some details on when water is (and is not) a primary factor from a land-value standpoint.  In this article, I put forth an idea from Tony Toso, a California Farm Bureau Federation director, rancher, and a professional agricultural land appraiser.  In a 2014 article about ground water rights, he said, “Everyone knows that land without water isn’t worth much.”

No matter the locale of the farm or the crop being grown, water access is so important that it has a direct impact on agricultural land values.  Read below as I got into a little more detail on the topic, and I hope you find this useful:Read More