There is a very clear stigma associated with millennials. Just for a moment, forget the stereotypical shallow, self-centered, lazy versions of millennials you read about and take a look at my life.
At 20-years-young my life looks dramatically different than those my age. I am married, working a full time job, and growing a farm… and I wouldn’t change a thing. My husband and I were not handed a farm, and have begun by building from the ground up. We have an understanding that growing the farm takes resiliency, determination, hope, sweat, and perseverance.
The most well-known attribute millennials have is their understanding of technology. With access to research of all kinds, were not afraid of trying new concepts or approaches to farming. First-generation farms can truly be powerful because there is no preconceived idea of what it should look like or how it should be done. This adaptation and change in practices can change the images we associate with a farm… Beginning with what a farmer looks like. When people hear of what we’re doing, they often look at me with a surprised expression and say “I never would have pictured you to be a farmer.” Rightfully so, I have never seen anyone else wear pearls in the pig pen either. Additionally, the entire operation begins to look different than any farm you have ever seen. While we share a passion for agriculture with farmers from other generations, we are also breaking the standards and developing a new perspective. We are shaping our farm with our passion to share our beliefs, and as millennials we are taking agriculture to the next level.
It is becoming more common for millennials and upcoming generations to have a connection with where their food comes from. Consumers are becoming aware of what goes on in the broken industrial food system and have a desire to be a part of the local food movement. As we join this movement we recognize the number of young couples in agriculture are few and the number of farms that can relate to millennials are fewer. A future in which food is safer, healthier, and environmentally friendly can exist while the status quo of farming is dramatically altered. The opportunity for young farmers has never been better, and it should be a future that everyone can get behind.
Consider supporting a local farm and stand behind millennial farmers who are passionate about entrepreneurship and strengthening the magnitude of the Local Food Movement.