METRICS FROM THE FIELD: How Do We Grow New Farmers?


  • Ken Meter Crossroads Resource Center



Farmily Farms, Farm Succession, Beginning Farmers


First paragraphs:

Often in my travels as a consultant and speaker, I am asked, "How do we grow new farmers?"

Every time I hear this question, I draw a quick breath. This is truly a remarkable question to hear in America, which prides itself on "feeding the world." If the most productive agricultural engine on the planet does not know how to grow new farmers, who does?

To answer this question, one needs to go back 50 years. A 1962 report by the Committee for Economic Development, a Wall Street think tank, concluded that the problem with U.S. agriculture was that it employed too many people. These human resources could be better allocated, the CED argued, by moving people off the farm, to be replaced by larger equipment....


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Author Biography

Ken Meter, Crossroads Resource Center

Ken Meter is president of Crossroads Resource Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He has performed 78 local food-system assessments in 30 states and one Canadian province; this information has promoted effective action in partner communities. He served as coordinator of the review process for USDA Community Food Project grants, and has taught economics at the Harvard Kennedy School and the University of Minnesota. He is co-convener of the Community Economic Development Committee of the Community Food Security Coalition. A member of the American Evaluation Association's Systems Technical Interest Group, Meter also serves as an Associate of the Human Systems Dynamics Institute.
Ken Meter



How to Cite

Meter, K. (2012). METRICS FROM THE FIELD: How Do We Grow New Farmers?. Journal of Agriculture, Food Systems, and Community Development, 2(2), 3–6.

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