Beginning farms participate less than established farms in Government farm payment programs

A chart showing the direct participation in Government payment programs and average government payment to farms.

Consistent with their commodity specializations, beginning farms—those whose operators have 10 or fewer years of farm operator experience—are less likely than more established farms to participate in Government direct-payment programs. Most farm programs focus on cash grain production while relatively few beginning farms specialize in cash grains. As a result, while they represented 22 percent of all farms in 2011, beginning farms accounted for only 14 percent of all farms that received Government payments, and received only 9 percent of all payments that year. However, beginning farmers and ranchers do avail themselves of other farm programs targeted at their needs, including farm loans, the Conservation Reserve Program’s Transition Incentive Program, and the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program. This chart is found in the ERS report, Beginning Farmers and Ranchers at a Glance, EB-22, January 2013.

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