Cultivate Farms have a new solution to uncover farm ownership opportunities for aspiring farmers in the Loddon, Upper Murray and Mallee communities. It is focused on empowering aspiring farmers to uncover their farm ownership pathway. Cultivate Farms focus on matching retiring farmers and aspiring farmers to find a shared farm ownership solution and they want to encourage communities to be their own match makers.
The Cultivate Farms team are trialling a program called ‘Cultivate Communities’. They want to empower community champions to get alongside aspiring farmers and retiring farmers to uncover farm ownership matches.
Luke and Rebecca are aspiring farmers based in the Mallee, near Mildura. Like many aspiring farmers, they grew up on a farm and thought that their life would be farming. Luke describes his story as a familiar story when the owner of the family farm controls the ownership of the farm, while their child or children work on the farm without a succession plan in place. Only for the farm owner, usually, the father to pass away and the farm sold.
It is a challenging life experience to pick up the pieces after losing access to a family farm and continue on the journey to create options to own a farm. “I felt stuck for 5 or 6 years,” said Luke. “It was hard to see a way forward and hard to imagine how we could own a farm.”
Over this time, Luke established a successful contracting business and, with the rain coming his business has taken off. “Our plans for 2021 is to boost our volume of business and secure a deposit,” explains Luke. “I have been keeping an eye on opportunities to owning a farm and watching Sam Marwood, CEO and co-founder at Cultivate Farms, and I met him last year on his roadshow around the Mallee region.”
Luke and Rebecca’s goal is to own a broad acre cropping, no til farm of 10,000 acres. “I decided to get involved in Cultivate Communities and think about how we could connect with retiring farmers and find out how we, or other aspiring farmers, could help them realise their long term vision for their farm.”
Sam Marwood has identified that there are many retiring farmers who don’t have a family to handover their farms but want to stay on farm and share their legacy. Additionally, excessive land prices, and capital required to buy a farm, has made farm ownership for young people increasingly difficult.
“Through farmer match making we believe we can address both these problems by matching aspiring farmers with retiring farmers, with the intention that they will find a farm sharing outcome that benefits them both,” said Sam.
Cultivate Farms have a library of proven methods to create and support farm matches which can be adopted by any community. They believe that every regional community should have champions who know these methods and be continually looking to find matches.
Forming a group of like-minded match makers is a powerful way to build momentum. We call these groups Cultivate Communities.
Contact Cultivate Farms if you are interested in learning more about Cultivate Communities in the Mallee or Loddon regions. firstname.lastname@example.org.
Download the Cultivate Communities guide here.