A bit of ranting


Farm Hand
I hate to say that but I honestly think people, especially the younger generation don’t really respect farming. I don’t expect them to appreciate what we are doing but sometimes they just think everything in the city is much better and having a regular job in the big city is a symbol of success or whatsoever. That actually annoys me. I don’t know if you guys have also heard something like that. It really makes me very uncomfortable.


Golden Chicken
Top Poster Of Month
The average age of famers is getting older and older. Not many young people want to get into farming. And as much as I don't like it, I can understand why. We work very long hours and don't make much money if we make any money at all. But for those of us who do it, it's a labor of love. In my case I have a full time job off the farm, because I know I couldn't survive on my farm income.


Farm Hand
I think part of the problem is that the younger people haven't experienced life on the farm. Maybe they have stereotypes about what farm life is like. Being raised with all kinds of technology, I think the younger generation is really into that. What they don't seem to know is that there's a lot of cool technology we can use on the farm, too. I think educating young people about farming would really help.


Farm Hand
The stereotype thing is true. And they don’t understand how important the agricultural industry is. Some educational programs should help, like what Nathaniel has said. But I doubt if people even bother to work on these programs.


Farm Hand
I am taking it the OP is in a rural area.

Been on both sides, urban and rural.

In general the rural kids can’t wait to get out - thinking it’s a “dead end”. City kids on the other hand really appreciate ag and farming - many want to check it out - and have more than a few go to college and make it a career.

It is all a matter of perspective. Rural kids in general see small operation and the struggle - kids not raised on it see opportunities and growth. It’s hard to start small and build - but not impossible.


Farm Hand
I think this is the time this needs to be said: Take a look at a map of the United States and of where all the cases of Covid-19 are. The densely populated cites got hit much, much harder than rural areas. If, God forbid, a second wave hits then maybe people will start to re-evaluate their living situations for the sake of their health.

Maybe then, they'll start to appreciate rural living because they're doing it.


Farm Hand
So true that rural life is under-appreciated, honestly. I am personally fine with both, urban and rural. But when it comes to my mental health, rural life helps more.


Farm Hand
Times have definitely changed. Culture defines "success" differently now. I think farmers are successful - if you provide food for yourself and/or others, I consider that a success, but I know that not everyone does.


Farm Hand
I think part of that is how things are portrayed .... most types of widespread media/entertainment are based in large cities, so they depict what's easiest, cheapest, and closest to them.

On the other hand there are younger farmers who are taking advantage of social media to highlight and educate those who aren't familiar with farm operations or rural life. Some examples on youtube: Minnesota Millennial Farmer, iowANFarmer, Urban Farmer, What The Farm Girl, Nyfarmgirls ...just to name a few.

Thing is with farming being one of those high capital requirement, low margin, highly-variable risk life choices it's not exactly easy to get started..... and even harder to grow it into something where it can actually be a sole occupation to support a family.

So between how much as farming has advanced, and the size of the mutli-generational/commercial farms that exist farming has almost become an occupation for either retirement, those who were born (or got married) into a farming family, or those who are entering a niche part of the food supply. Given the cost of land, equipment, housing/construction, and the cost of the basics (seed, fuel, pesticides/herbicides, hay, etc).... it'd seem almost impossible to get started in traditional row-crop farming beyond the first two methods in the preceding sentence.

If I'm wrong at I'd love to hear how as personally I grew up spending a lot of time on my grandparents farm -- which ended up being broken up over time, with all the equipment sold off they they died as none of their children had an interest in farming. So when/if the total of all your possessions can fit in the back of an SUV, it may take a while and a few other career choices in order to be able to get back to into farming...... which is pretty much the route I'm taking (and starting small with what I'd call a large garden just to start learning more about the differences in climate/soil from where I grew up).

So I guess I hear what you're saying, and don't entirely disagree, but the problem probably isn't as bad as it seems in some ways -- and potentially worse in others since there are a growing number of people in the world who've never even seen living livestock, or have any knowledge of how/where their food is grown and there are enough to have a very large influence on government policy. Which is part of the reason why it no longer bothers me that some zoos actually have sections devoted to farm animals.