Beginning Farmer Services

We are dedicated to helping beginning farmers create and sustain new farms.

Any farmer with limited experience operating a farm can contact us to receive assistance.

WHAT WE CAN HELP WITH

We consult with beginning farmers about their land search at no cost. We help identify challenges, as well as opportunities for training and research. We can also connect you to other helpful resources. You can prepare for a productive consultation with this Land Search Info Form.

Need help financing your land purchase? We may be able to help with your down payment or even act as a mortgage holder.

You may also want to consider if MFT’s farmland protection services might be applicable to your situation, helping you buy a protected farm that would be more affordable.

Unprotected farmland is often too expensive for farmers. We increasingly help beginning farmers afford to buy a farm by protecting it with an easement.

MFT lists properties available for lease in Maine FarmLink.

Working one-on-one, or with a team of specialists, we can help you improve your financial and market resilience, consider new products or markets, explore collaborations with other farmers, and respond to farm business challenges. Learn more.

CONTACT: Elizabeth Sprague, Business Development Manager, Farm Viability

A key for any beginning farmer is to find markets. Many beginning farmers rely primarily on direct sales via farm stands, farmers markets, and CSAs, while an increasing number are exploring ways to also sell some products wholesale. MFT helps farmers—including beginning farmers –access markets of all types, but we are working especially hard on helping farmers enter emerging wholesale markets. To this end, we provide a series of training workshops and ongoing technical assistance. We also operate the Unity Food Hub, which directly serves farmers seeking new markets.

CONTACT: Mike Gold, Program Manager, Farm Viability

MFT, in partnership with MOFGA, provides handy access to key pieces of farm machinery that some farmers occasionally need. This service may be well-suited to some beginning farmers.

CONTACT: Mike Gold, Program Manager, Farm Viability

You can connect with other beginning farmers and local food enthusiasts through various events. Check out what’s happening!

As a leading member of the Beginning Farmer Resource Network of Maine, MFT can also help you connect to other organizations and programs, if your needs fall outside the scope of our services.

HOW TO GET STARTED

Beginning Farmer Resource Network Logo

Beginning Farmer Resource Network

This coalition of Maine agricultural agencies and organizations works together to connect aspiring, beginning, and transitioning farmers to resources for farm business success. Visit BFRN.

Frith Farm

Top Ten Tips for a Successful Land Search

Searching for your dream farm? Check out our top ten tips to help you make your land search a successful one!

Contact Us

Contact Us

To set up a consultation about your land search, get in touch with Sue Lanpher.

Let's grow a bright future for farming in Maine, together.