The CFBA Young Farmer Committee Welcomes
New and Beginning Farmers and Students Interested in Agriculture.
Young Farmers: Enter to compete in the 2017 AFBF Young Farmer Awards Competitions. Here are the details and download the applications.
Are you a new or beginning farmer in Connecticut, or a student interested in pursuing your interest in agriculture? The Young Farmer Committee of the Connecticut Farm Bureau provides an excellent opportunity for farmers, ages 18-35, to actively participate in Farm Bureau programs, learn from other farmers and become leaders in Connecticut agriculture.
Young Farmers are a group of friends and colleagues who will take the lead as Connecticut's next generation of farmers. And we like to have fun together!
Agriculture today is very exciting, challenging and different from the farming that our grandfathers practiced. As new farmers we need to learn from experienced farmers as well as each other.
As a result of participation in Farm Bureau programs, Young Farmer members experience personal growth and achievement as Farm Bureau members, farmers, citizens and community leaders. Working the land is important, and there are many additional opportunities to grow agriculture. Our Young Farmer group works in policy development and execution. We teach ag students, and work at promotion, marketing, political education and action, and are active in local affairs. In the spring of 2014, for example, we hosted a tour of the State Capitol and a training for young farmers on how to testify before the legislature.
Young Farmer Leadership Conference
American Farm Bureau's Annual Young Farmer & Rancher Leadership Conference is held each year in February. The conference offers motivational speakers, idea exchange, awards and recognition, fellowship and networking opportunities. New and beginning farmers will benefit from this experience, and Connecticut sends representatives each year.
Tours and Activities
Student members and young farmers are welcome at all meetings. We schedule regular tours at farms and agricultural facilities across the state to get together, learn from other farmers, and to network. Recently we've toured Jones Family Farm and Winery, Arethusa Farm, Hull Forest Products, Westford Hill Distillers and Urbanowicz's Tobacco operation.
We also host an annual barbeque in August, and offer a holiday basket fundraisier. The CFBA Young Farmer
Committee also represents Farm Bureau scooping ice cream at an annual ice cream social at the state capitol. We will hold some of our meetings at the UConn Storrs campus in 2014-15 to make it easier for ag students to network with our group.
Young Farmer Achievement Award
The Achievement Award Program is designed to recognize those young farmers who have excelled in their farming operations and honed their leadership abilities. State Achievement Award winners represent Connecticut at the American Farm Bureau Federation Annual Meeting and Convention.
In 2010, CFBA First Vice President Jamie Jones of Shelton represented Connecticut after being awarded as winner at the 2009 CFBA Annual Meeting. Jamie competed at the national AFBF conference, and was one of four runners-up for the Young Farmers & Ranchers Achievement Award, winning a Case Farmall Tractor.
Contestants are evaluated on a combination of their farming operation growth and financial progress of operation, Farm Bureau Leadership, as well as leadership outside of Farm Bureau. More specifically, the judges look for excellence in management, growth and scope of the enterprise and initiatives that have been displayed throughout the operation.
Young Farmer Excellence in Agriculture Award
The Farm Bureau Excellence in Agriculture Award Program is designed as an opportunity for young farmers who do not derive the majority of their income from an owned agricultural operation, while actively contributing and growing through their involvement in Farm Bureau and agriculture, to earn recognition. State Excellence in Agriculture Award winners represent Connecticut at the American Farm Bureau Federation Annual Meeting and Convention.
In 2010, Connecticut Young Farmer former Chairman Joanna Samuelson placed in the top ten in this national award competition. Participants are judged on their involvement in agriculture, leadership ability, involvement and participation in Farm Bureau and other organizations.
Young Farmer Discussion Meet
Farm Bureau's strength depends on its members' ability to analyze agricultural problems and decide on solutions that best meet their needs. One of the events a member can compete in as a Young Farmer is the annual Discussion Meet. State Discussion Meet winners represent Connecticut at the American Farm Bureau Federation Annual Meeting and Convention.
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Whether you are interested in learning to farm, just starting out as a new farmer, or you're the next generation to take on responsibilities on your family's farm, you will enjoy and learn from our CFBA Young Farmer group. Please join us!
Young Farmer Committee Officers
Chair: Kies Orr
Vice Chair: Jacob Lipton
Secretary: Mackenzie White
Treasurer: Andrew Urbanowicz
State Board Representative: Rebecca Baker