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Missouri Passes Law to Help Young Farmers
Missouri Ag Connection - 09/15/2023

Missouri state lawmakers have passed a bill to incentivize selling land to beginning farmers, in an effort to recruit new generations to the agriculture industry.

The bill, House Bill 202, authorizes an income tax deduction of up to $500,000 per year for selling a farm to a beginning farmer and up to $25,000 per year from leases or crop share arrangements.

The average age of a Missouri farmer is 59.4 years old and less than 5% of all farmers in the state are under 35. This is due in part to the high costs of buying land and the high taxes associated with selling it.

Ethan Vanderwert, a 19-year-old farmer from New Franklin, Missouri, comes from six generations of farmers. He is passionate about farming, but he knows that it can be difficult for young people to get into the industry.

Vanderwert said that many aspiring farmers are passionate about returning to the farm, but like him, they need to work another job before they can afford to farm full-time. This can make it difficult to save up enough money to start a farm.

The new law will help to reduce the financial barriers for both current producers and aspiring farmers. It is hoped that this will encourage more young people to enter the agriculture industry and help to keep family farms alive.

U.S. Representative Mark Alford, who serves the 4th Congressional District of Missouri, said that the new law incentivizes existing farmers to sell their land to keep property in the country, which is something we need more of.

Vanderwert believes that the agriculture industry has a lot to offer young people, and he hopes that the new law will encourage more people to consider a career in farming.

Vanderwert encouraged young people to reconsider their options and consider farming as a career. He said that farming can be a financially stable profession and that land is the best asset.

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