Understanding Millennial Farmers

Posted by Timothy Wier On December 05, 2017


understanding millennial farmers


The world is changing, and agriculture is no exception. As more and more farm patriarchs are retiring, Millennials are taking a more active role in managing America’s farms.

That means it’s important for business intelligence, marketing and sales professionals to understand Millennials and how their farming practices compare to previous generations.Here are a few trends that will help agribusiness professionals better understand millennial farmers. 

(Note: This article is part of the "Marketing to Farmers" series. Click here to  read the free guide.)

Millennial farmers integrate technology with agriculture practices

As technology disrupts and impacts all areas of American and global business, it’s important to realize that technology is becoming a more integral part of the farm. From automation to mobile technology, modern farmers – and a large number of millennials – are using technology to make farming more efficient and precise.

Drones, satellites, autonomous tractors and robotics are all everyday parts of the farms. This means that the agriculture industry is not just about sowing, planting and harvesting – it’s about technology and building a farm operation that relies more on automation and precision.

This ties in with the fact that Millennial farmers are more interested in working smarter, not harder. The growing presence of technology on the farm is key to making that possible.

Millennial farmers move farms into the city

Farms aren’t just located in the heartland, but in the middle of the city. Urban farming is on the rise again.

As the population moves more and more into the city and away from the country, farms are moving with them. By 2050, 70 percent of the global population will live in cities. It makes sense for farms to move with people rather than for millions of dollars to be spent on transporting food.

Millennial farmers may start to spend more time in climate controlled, indoor hydroponic farmers that grow and sell food year-round, rather than the open fields.

Millennial farmers demand corporate social responsibility (CSR) among farms

The farm is more than just a planting, growing and harvesting operation – it affects the environment as a whole. That’s why new fields of study, like Theoretical Production Ecology, are on the rise.

Millennial farmers care about the environment. And they’re insisting that farms start addressing these issues – and more – through corporate social responsibility (CSR).

While CSR typically includes aspects of environmental conservation, it often requires much more from farms. Here are just a few things that millennials would like to see from the farms they support:

  • Active addressing of the impact farms have on climate change
  • Adopting more sustainable farming practices
  • Ethically sourcing all of their food
  • Demanding fair labor practices among farm workers

Thus, as Millennials take more control of farms, we should expect to see a trend toward more sustainable farming practices and a bent toward CSR.

Now that you have an idea of what to expect from Millennial farmers, it’s time to start reaching out. Download our eBook on marketing and selling to farmers to learn more.

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