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Virtual learning opportunities to farm

Cornell Cooperative Extension’s Southwest New York Dairy, Livestock, and Field Crops Program is working with educators across the state to bring a virtual learning opportunity to farms in the Southwest New York Region who are looking to being their succession planning journey.

The series will be $60 per farm family and includes a comprehensive workbook, an online learning classroom, and four interactive video sessions held via Zoom. The program will be held from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Oct. 8, 15, 22 and 29. For more information, contact Katelyn Walley-Stoll, Farm Business Management specialist, at 640-0522 or kaw249@cornell.edu.

Topics include how family farms will operate in the future when the owner retires or is gone, those who are working with another generation who may be questioning their role in the future of the farm or are questioning their current role? More than 80% of farm families hope to pass the family farm on to the next generation, but research shows only 30% of family farms survive to the second generation, and only 12% survive to the third generation.

To help New York’s farm families start their succession planning process, Cornell Cooperative Extension educators will be utilizing a new interactive program designed by North Dakota State University Extension, “Design Your Succession Plan.” The program will provide tools and resources for producers who want to begin the succession planning process.

Participants will have an opportunity to open the lines of communication with family to create a shared vision for the family business. They will also learn to choose and work with professionals such as attorneys, accountants, lenders, insurance agents and tax experts to construct a plan and documents that put the family’s vision into action.

“The program will prepare you to envision, communicate, plan, write and shape the legacy of your family farm or ranch business, as well as save hundreds of dollars by completing these crucial planning steps before visiting with professionals,” said Bonnie Collins, farm business management educator at Cornell Cooperative Extension Oneida County.

This program is being offered via Zoom. The cost is $60 per farm family and includes a workbook valued at $20. The registration deadline is Sept. 30 to ensure on-time delivery of the workbook. Register at reg.cce.cornell.edu/dsp–230

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