The latest survey of participants in the American Farm Bureau Federation’s (AFBF) Young Farmers & Ranchers (YFR) program shows an even split when it comes to concerns about the top challenges they face today.


A total of 21% of young farmers surveyed ranked burdensome government regulations and red tape as a top concern; an additional 21% cited securing adequate land to grow crops and raise livestock as their top challenge today.

“Most young farmers and ranchers would like to stay on the farm or ranch their entire lives,” says Glen Cope, AFBF’s national YFR committee chair and a beef cattle producer from Missouri. “One of the biggest challenges many of us have faced is getting enough capital to start farming. And then, once we are established, regulatory costs can be the wildcard that determines whether we can be successful enough to stay on the land.”

Other issues ranked as top concerns included economic challenges, particularly profitability, 11%; availability of farm labor and related regulations, 8%; and willingness of parents to turn over the reins of the farm or ranch, 7%.

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