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Farmland Preservation and Farm Transition

Senior farming couple (Copyright IStock).
In addition to food and fiber, agricultural land supplies many cultural and ecological benefits "such as social heritage, scenic views, open space and community character. Long-range environmental benefits include wildlife habitat, clean air and water, flood control, groundwater recharge and carbon sequestration." From Why Save Farmland? (PDF 36 KB) American Farmland Trust.

USDA. Natural Resources Conservation Service.

Clearinghouse for information about farmland protection and stewardship: statistics, laws, organizations, literature and technical tools. Includes state-specific resources. Center is a partnership between the USDA NRCS and American Farmland Trust.

USDA. Economic Research Service.

Data about major uses of land, agricultural land use change, urbanization and agricultural land, farmland protection and agricultural land values.

USDA. Natural Resources Conservation Service.

Working through existing programs, this program provides funds to help purchase development rights to keep productive farmland in agricultural uses.

American Farmland Trust.

Programs and policy for protecting agricultural land through publicly funded agricultural conservation easement programs, planned growth with agriculture in mind, and stewardship and conservation practices.

University of Arkansas. National Agricultural Law Center.

Site includes Congressional reports, agency listings, Center reports and references to statutes, case law and other government information pertinent to right-to-farm laws, agricultural zoning near cities, development rights and easements, farmland protection and more.

Minnesota Institute for Sustainable Agriculture.

The Toolkit offers resources, advice and help to plan for transitioning farmland to the next generation. Links to farmer success stories, farmer transitions programs, government programs, fact sheets, courses, planning tools, legal resources, and more. Also details ten common sustainable agriculture and conservation practices for farming your land.