This is my response to the comment recently received by Trent Loos on the future of youth in agriculture:
I’m a cattle rancher studying Animal Sciences/Ag Communications at South Dakota State University. Although my parents farm isn’t large enough for me to return to, I hope to one day be able to have a farm of my own. There is simply no better way to raise a family, and providing food and fiber for the world is one of the most rewarding careers any kid could ever dream of doing.
Unfortunately, getting into farming and ranching is a greater challenge than ever before as small farms are sucked up by corporate operations making it seemingly impossible to get started in the business. Land prices have outrageously skyrocketed, operating costs have accelerated, and there are careers outside of this industry with greater earning power.
As a young person, I realize the challenges of getting into the agriculture industry; however, this is my passion. It is quite disheartening to hear from another farmer that greed outweighs the desire to help young people continue the American farming tradition. Trent Loos doesn’t need to use rose-colored glasses to recognize that there are young people out there with the desire to own a farm and there are aging farmers with the heart to create opportunities for us.
Regardless of the challenges facing young people with an interest in agriculture, we are the future of food security and we will take a role in its success. God Bless any veteran farmer willing to help.