Who wants to be a farmer? Ask kids what they want to be when they grow up and you’ll probably hear something like “rock star” or “athlete.” College courses on organic agriculture aren’t the first to fill up...yet. But the time is coming.
“Gen-O,” the next generation of organic farmers, will one day take the lead in producing high quality organic food. They’re the next generation of stewards of the earth. They’re the young people standing up to follow in the footsteps of previous generations of organic wisdom. The Generation Organic campaign is designed to nurture future generations of organic farmers.
America lost 4.7 million farmers since 1935, and most of the 2.1 million who remain are over 55 years old. In contrast, the average age of Organic Valley farmers is much younger, with a growing number of farmer-members under 35 years old. An increasing number of Gen-O farmers are indeed the second generation of farmers growing up organic in their family's cooperative. But there are also young people coming fresh into farming from all types of backgrounds. The Organic Valley co-op even counts several college ag programs among their membership.
Gen-O is about encouraging potential young organic farmers to follow their dreams and pursue their goals.
Organic Valley supports its young farmers with a slate of initiatives from educational programs to scholarships to regional gatherings, to a farmer support hotline, to on-staff organic veterinarians. And every year we recognize a young farmer in each region through our Gen-O awards program. Learn more about our programs at www.farmers.coop.
You don't have to farm to be part of the Gen-O movement. Every time you choose Organic Valley products, you help support a sustainable future for organic farmers for generations to come.
If you ARE a beginning farmer, or thinking about organic farming, you can learn more at www.farmers.coop.