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The Virginia Beginning Farmer and Rancher Coalition Program (brochure)



Authors as Published

Authored by Kim Niewolny, Associate Professor and Extension Specialist, Department of Agricultural, Leadership, and Community Education, Virginia Tech; William Crutchfield, Director, Small Farm Outreach Program, Virginia State University; Katie Trozzo, Food Systems Network and Outreach Specialist, Department of Agricultural, Leadership, and Community Education, Virginia Tech

The Virginia Beginning Farmer and Rancher Coalition Program

A state-wide program focused on training, outreach, and capacity building for beginning farmers and farmer educators.

We are a partnership of cooperative extension, university, non-profit, governmental, and community organizations that together provide whole farm planning curriculum and training, online resources, and networking.

We provide educational programs, resources, and networking

  • Whole Farm Planning Curriculum & Programs: Workshops and programs designed to guide new farmers in achieving their farm goals and aspirations using a holistic "whole farm" approach.
  • Social Networking and Technical Assistance: Valuable networking experiences and long-term technical assistance for farmers provided by our coalition of partner organizations.
  • Webinars and Farmer Videos: Online educational opportunities encompassing start-up topics, speakers, and resources.
  • Coalition Building & Capacity Building: Peer learning opportunities for farmer educators, service providers, and agricultural leaders to support beginning farmer audiences in Virginia. 

Whole Farm Planning for FarmStart-up and Sustainability

Hands-on training with whole farm planning curriculum in core areas:

  • Introduction to whole farm planning
  • Land acquisition and tenure
  • Business management and planning
  • Marketing
  • Sustainable farming practices

Are you new to farming?

The Virginia Beginning Farmer and Rancher Coalition aims to improve opportunities for beginning farmers and ranchers* to establish and sustain viable agricultural operations and communities in Virginia through whole farm planning curriculum and programs, online and peer learning, and social networking

*Our program recognizes a diversity of farming experiences, cultural backgrounds, and aims held by Virginia beginning farmers and ranchers. The program primarily focuses on those who are exploring the possibility of or are in the early stages of starting a farm, and those expanding or diversifying an existing farm.

Contact Information


Social Media

Instagram: vabeginningfarmer

Funding was sponsored by the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program (BFRDP) of the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) Award #2020-49400-32326.

Beginner Famr and Rancher Coalition and associates logos.

Virginia Cooperative Extension materials are available for public use, reprint, or citation without further permission, provided the use includes credit to the author and to Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, and Virginia State University.

Virginia Cooperative Extension is a partnership of Virginia Tech, Virginia State University, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and local governments. Its programs and employment are open to all, regardless of age, color, disability, sex (including pregnancy), gender, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, genetic information, military status, or any other basis protected by law

Publication Date

February 17, 2023