WASHINGTON -- National Farmers Union (NFU) is now accepting applications for its 2014 Beginning Farmers Institute (BFI) program. The annual program, now accepting its fourth class of students, is open to individuals who are new to farming, are in the process of transferring an operation from a relative or non-relative to themselves, or are contemplating a career in farming or ranching.
'The Beginning Farmers Institute underscores NFU's commitment to growing a new generation of family agriculture,' said NFU President Roger Johnson. 'One unique feature of the Institute is that participants direct the agenda, allowing them to gain information on topics that will be most relevant to their particular operations. The small size and diversity of the group also ensures valuable interaction and learning opportunities among the participants.'
The BFI program helps students gain insight and practical skills needed by beginning farmers and ranchers, including business plan writing, financial planning, and researching available programs to help starting up and sustaining a successful operation.
Applicants accepted into the 2014 program will attend three separate education sessions. One will be in Washington, D.C., one in Minneapolis, Minn. and a final session culminating at NFU's annual Convention in March 2015 in Wichita, Kan. Program topics at the education sessions will include business planning, U.S. Department of Agriculture programs, tax and record keeping, estate transfer and marketing.
The Beginning Farmers Institute is supported by the FUI Foundation, Farm Credit, CHS Foundation and the NFU Foundation.
Interested applicants can download the 2014 application on the NFU website, as well as visit NFU's education Facebook page for updates and further information on NFU's youth and young adult education programs. Applications must be postmarked on or before Feb. 20, 2014.
National Farmers Union has been working since 1902 to protect and enhance the economic well-being and quality of life for family farmers, ranchers and rural communities through advocating grassroots-driven policy positions adopted by its membership.