(BOZEMAN, Montana, August 15, 2017) – Acting Montana USDA Farm Service Agency State Executive Director Amy Webbink announced today that Montana will participate in a recently announced effort to mentor new and beginning farmers and ranchers, veterans, women, socially disadvantaged Americans, and others to enable them to better succeed in agri-business. Today’s announcement is part of a partnership announced in August by Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, which established a partnership between the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and SCORE, the nation’s largest network of volunteer, expert business mentors.

Montana FSA: USDA and SCORE Launch Innovative Mentorship Effort in Montana to Support New Farmers and Ranchers

(BOZEMAN, Montana, August 15, 2017) – Acting Montana USDA Farm Service Agency State Executive Director Amy Webbink announced today that Montana will participate in a recently announced effort to mentor new and beginning farmers and ranchers, veterans, women, socially disadvantaged Americans, and others to enable them to better succeed in agri-business. Today’s announcement is part of a partnership announced in August by Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, which established a partnership between the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and SCORE, the nation’s largest network of volunteer, expert business mentors.

“Beginning farmers want help in developing business plans,” said Webbink. “They need to obtain financing and work with long-term farmers who can help them succeed. This partnership with SCORE will help give them the tools they need.”

SCORE mentors will partner not only with USDA and the Farm Service Agency (FSA), but the wide array of groups already hard at work serving new and beginning farmers and ranchers. These groups include, but are not limited to, cooperative extension and land grant universities, nonprofits, legal aid groups, banks, technical and farm advisors and so many more. This key partnership will allow FSA and all of these partners to expand and integrate outreach and technical assistance, and to connect current and retired farmers and agri-business experts with new farmers to provide mentoring, technical and financial assistance.

Webbink said the effort is aimed at helping young Americans and those seeking second careers following military service who would like to pursue careers in agriculture, but feel the cost to enter the field is high. FSA and its partners plan to work with interested individuals, families and groups to develop business plans, attract operating capital and achieve their goals.

For more information about the SCORE-USDA partnership, see https://newfarmers.usda.gov/mentorship.

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