Grown Here at Home: New website helping to connect farmers in Virginia
RICHMOND, Va. (WDBJ) - A resource for farmers has a new look. The Virginia Farm Link website is an interactive resource to help match retiring farmers with beginning and expanding farmers.
“There’s going to be a major transition of land over the next 10 years or so as the older generations needs to retire and pass their farms onto someone,” said Jen Perkins, Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services farmland preservation coordinator.
The idea for Virginia Farm Link started back in 2008. It was a simple Excel spreadsheet that was shared with farmers. It was an idea that caught on quickly.
“When our database came out it then got copied by a lot of other states but then they surpassed us technologically. This new version is easier to use. It has updated information on all sorts of transition resources. Now you can search by acreage, what types of facilities are on the property, if there’s the ability to have water, if there’s housing. You can search by different types of transition relationships. Are you just looking to lease your property or looking to sell your property to create a partnership with a new farmer and transition it over time – a lease to own type of transition?” Perkins explained.
The website is free to use. Go to virginiafarmlink.org to sign up.
“You put all of your information in and then it gets reviewed prior to getting posted so that we can provide feedback if there’s ways that you can improve your listing to make it more appealing. Once you’re in there you can send communications through the database with potential farm seekers and go from there,” Perkins said.
Even if you’re not looking to post a listing, Virginia Farm Link has lots of information on how farmers can transition their land or lease it.
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