Farming More Than Just a Career

Agriculture is a rewarding and challenging career opportunity. A very important career in many ways, farmers today contribute to the production of healthy food for their communities and the world, while proactively managing their land in an environmentally sound manner.

Are you interested in becoming a farmer? Are you a historically underserved farmer looking for resources?  Large or small, your operation makes a positive impact and Michigan Conservation Districts are your local resource for information and assistance.  Conservation Districts support the diverse farming community in Michigan and encourage you to seek out more information to begin your farming journey and to make your operation more successful and profitable.  Take a moment to review the below resources and then make stop by your local Conservation District and NRCS Field Office to learn more about how to engage in the program opportunities available.   

Beginning and Historically Underserved Farmer Resources

Michigan's farmers are a diverse community of individuals that together provide an amazing diversity of agricultural products.  

There are many outstanding resources, a few of which are highlighted below.  

Visit, or make an appointment with your local Conservation District and USDA-NRCS Field Offices for more information on the programs available.  

USDA New Farmers Website.  A great resource with in-depth information for:
New Farmers
Women in Agriculture
Young Farmers
Farms in Transition

Michigan Food and Farming Systems connects beginning and historically underserved farmers to each other and resource opportunities; ensuring social justice, environmental stewardship, and profitability.
Veteran Farmers

Veterans are engaging in farming in ever increasing numbers and Michigan Conservation Districts are at their service.  Learn more about Michigan Conservation District activities and programs by visiting the many resources available on this website, and by visiting your local Conservation District website.  

The Farmer Veteran Coalition, is a great resource for veterans and we encourage you to visit their website, to learn more about the Coalition and their programs:
Homegrown By Heroes program
Fellowship Fund

Learn more about the Michigan Chapter of the Farmer Veteran Coalition by viewing the Webinar: 
"Michigan Farmer Veterans Lead the Way"

USDA Programs of Interest

The USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service provides technical and cost share assistance through the Farm Bill, in partnership with Michigan Conservation Districts.  

To learn more about the programs available through the Farm Bill, visit the MACD Farm Bill page, and the Michigan NRCS website.

View the Michigan Landowner Steps to Technical Assistance Video              

Michigan Programs of Interest

There are several state programs in Michigan that are delivered by Michigan Conservation Districts, that are of interest to beginning and historically underserved farmers.  The following links lead to web-based information on the programs.  Visit your local Conservation District to learn more about what is available in your county.

Forestry Assistance Program

Habitat Incentive Program

Hunter Access Program

Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program

Michigan Clean Sweep

Michigan Pheasant Restoration Initiative

Michigan Right to Farm Information

Interested in learning more about how you can sign up for programs that will help you and your farm?  Click Here to view the Sign Up for Programs YouTube Video

The USDA-NRCS website: "Get Started with NRCS" has 5 Steps to Assistance information that will assist in guiding you through how to get assistance from NRCS for Farms, Ranches and Forests.

Find your Local Conservation District to learn more about program opportunities and assistance.

This material is based upon work supported by the Natural resource Conservation Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture under Agreement # 68-5D21-14-17.  Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.