Recent Posts

Food Hubs: Solving Local
March 28, 2014
New supply networks are forming to satisfy consumer demand for products sourced from nearby farms, ranches, and related businesses. They're called Food Hubs. Read More >


Food Hubs On the Move
March 28, 2014
Farm Credit System’s commitment to young, beginning and small farmers in all types of agriculture is on full display at this week’s National Good Food Network (NGFN) conference in Raleigh, NC. Read More >


Pre-Beginning Farmers
March 26, 2014
Agriculture Future of America offers leadership and career development training and community-based academic scholarships for college men and women pursuing a career in an agriculture-related field. Read More >


Veterans in the 2014 Farm Bill
March 25, 2014
There are a number of changes in the 2014 Farm Bill that benefit farmer veterans. For the first time, "Veteran Farmers" are recognized as a distinct class of farmer by USDA. Read More >


Nothing To Do With Money
March 18, 2014
Quiet pride is a rare and moving experience. Maybe you’ve led a daughter down the aisle, or stood with workmates recognized for superior performance, or watched the flag go by in a Fourth of July parade. There’s not much to be said in such situations. Quiet pride wells up from a place too deep to describe, felt by the understanding of mission, hushed for fear that embarrassing tears will flow. Read More >


Music to My Ears, or…
March 13, 2014
Jake Carter has been farming with his Dad for years, so he’s not exactly a beginning farmer. As Chairman of the American Farm Bureau Federation’s Young Farmer and Rancher (YF&R) Committee, he spends enough time with young and beginning farmers to be considered an expert. Read More >


Preliminary Report on the Census of Agriculture
March 11, 2014
USDA has released preliminary data from the 2012 Census of Agriculture. The every-five-year census is the main source of information on the agricultural economy, reporting everything from watermelons to new farm starts. The big caution is that the preliminary data shouldn’t be relied upon to draw deep conclusions in advance of the comprehensive data release likely in May.
Read More >


The Ningxia Hui Connection
February 27, 2014
The last part of my job title says “Outreach.” It’s a great catch-all term that I take as license to visit with agricultural groups across any spectrum imaginable. Yesterday, that continuum was stretched in distance and language as I spoke to a group of rural development officials from north central China. Read More >


Rural Entrepreneurs
February 25, 2014
Speaking to young, beginning farmer groups at conference workshops around the country, I get frustrated at how many think they are going to become farmers. Don't get me wrong, that's a noble goal. Not to mention that providing beginning farmers financial skills training, inspiration, and guidance is a big part of my job, which I'd like to keep. Read More >


How Things Start
February 4, 2014
In farming, how things start goes a long way towards predicting how things will finish. In other words, providing optimal conditions for planting and germination is the first best step in assuring a full harvest. I'd like to think that same principle applies to how the Farm Credit Council Annual Meeting started out this morning. Read More >


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About Gary Matteson
Gary Matteson has more than 30 years of experience in farming, small business, and agriculture-related organizations. He leads the Farm Credit program serving young, beginning and small farmers and ranchers at the Farm Credit Council, the System's national trade organization. Mr. Matteson coordinates efforts within Farm Credit's nationwide network and among many national agricultural organizations to ensure that beginning farmers have opportunities for success. The Farm Credit System provides beginning farmers loan assistance, mentoring and business planning support. Mr. Matteson also helps Farm Credit build diversity in farming by encouraging agricultural operations that bring a focus to locally grown foods in or near urban areas. He has researched, designed curricula, and taught financial and business planning skills for more than ten years to thousands of beginning farmers in conferences, seminars, webinars, and college classrooms. Mr. Matteson specializes in making basic business concepts approachable and relevant to beginning farmers.