Old-time Wisdom for New Farmers

Learning from the past is focus of free online video series for new farmers.

by Dani Yokhna

The "Voices of Experience" video series features 12 success New York farming businessmenThere’s a lot of truth behind the adage, “If I’d only known then what I know now.”

In agriculture, learning from the past means increased yields, better farm-business practices and more enjoyment of the land.

For new farmers, Cornell University has put the wisdom of the agricultural ages into an innovative, online video series that will help agricultural entrepreneurs successfully launch new farms in New York State.

The “Voices of Experience” video series covers essential topics—financing farm start-up, marketing, profitability and goal setting, to name just a few.

In this case, the “voices of experience” featured in the series are 12 farmers who’ve successfully started their own farm businesses in New York.

“Every new farmer should have a peer mentor to go to for help. But as a starting point, this series of videos offers new farmers some incredibly valuable but more generalized peer wisdom,” said Erica Frenay, New York Beginning Farmer Project Coordinator for Cornell’s Small Farms Program.

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“It is so powerful to hear advice coming directly from people who have been through the adventure of starting their own farm business.”

Available at no cost at www.nybeginningfarmers.org, “Voices of Experience” is produced by the NY Beginning Farmer Project with support from the Cornell Small Farms Program, Cornell Cooperative Extension and the NY Farm Viability Institute.

In addition to the video series, the Beginning Farmer Project offers educational articles and farm profiles to assist new farm operators.

The Beginning Farmer Project’s mission is to improve the likelihood of success of all new farmers by providing the education and support they need to develop and realize their agricultural visions.

Any person interested in farming is able to get the production, marketing, business and financial planning they need, both at start-up and in the long-term. The team’s work helps maintain and improve a landscape of diverse farms that contributing to a thriving regional economy.

Contact Frenay at 607-255-9911 or ejf5@cornell.edu with questions.

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