Finding Land to Farm

Aloha FarmLovers!

Please enjoy this article from The San Fransisco Chronicle…

New farmers’ biggest challenge: Finding land to farm

By Jonathan Kauffman November 26, 2017, for the San Fransisco Chronicle

Photo: Carlos Avila Gonzalez, The Chronicle

Gillyflower Farm in Capay (Yolo County) is so new that owner Laura Reynolds has no tractors, employees or spare cash. By late fall, she has only planted one-third of her 1-acre plot. On harvest day for her weekly customer deliveries, which focus on greens and salad-friendly vegetables, she cools the produce in a generator-powered freezer that she unplugs before ice crystals form.

The recent UC Davis grad and longtime farm intern does have good land, though, and the ear of her landlord, Sherri Wood, when problems arise. That’s because Wood is building her house a few hundred feet away.

Reynolds is not alone in farming land in, essentially, someone else’s yard — particularly in this state. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s August 2017 Land Values Summary, the average price per acre of farmland in California was $8,700, among the highest in the country. Just as significant, land prices here rose 10.1 percent over the past year, faster than any other state.

“Land access is one of the most difficult issues that young farmers face across the country,” said Lindsey Lusher Shute, executive director of the National Young Farmers Coalition. keep reading

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