June 23, 2016 04:46 PM

New Loans and Commitments to Beginning Farmers and Ranchers Grew 12.2 Percent over Prior Year

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The Farm Credit Administration today reviewed Farm Credit’s 2015 financing of beginning farmers and ranchers, which includes significant increases across multiple metrics: the number of beginning farmers served, the number of new loans, the average size of loans, and the total amount of financing provided to this important agricultural sector.

Farm Credit made nearly 80,000 new loans to beginning farmers and ranchers in 2015 totaling nearly $13 billion. The number of loans made to beginning producers increased by 12.2 percent – more than 5,000 loans – over 2014. More than one in five Farm Credit loans was made to beginning farmers in 2015, and, on average, every hour of every day last year, Farm Credit made well over $1 million in loans to beginning farmers and ranchers.

“We are pleased to see the improvement in loans made to young, beginning, and small farmers in 2015,” said Farm Credit Administration Board Chair Kenneth A. Spearman in a statement. Each year, Farm Credit lenders specifically report their loan activities in support of beginning farmers and those results are reviewed by the Farm Credit Administration, the federal regulator that oversees Farm Credit activity, and reported to Congress.

“These results represent a considerable increase in Farm Credit lending to beginning farmers and demonstrate our continued commitment to fulfilling our mission, which has always been to provide stable access to credit for all of agriculture,” said Todd Van Hoose, President and CEO of the Farm Credit Council. “Beginning farmers and ranchers have always been an important part of Farm Credit’s mission and we make specific efforts to meet their unique financing needs.”

“As lower commodity prices put pressure on farmers, our commitment to all our customers will be especially critical as we continue to help them establish, maintain and grow their businesses,” said Van Hoose. “This ongoing commitment builds on Farm Credit’s 100 year history of providing the essential credit rural communities and agriculture, including beginning farmers, need to thrive.”


Farm Credit made nearly 80,000 loans to beginning farmers and ranchers in 2015, an increase of some 5,000 over 2014.

  • Even as concerns rise about lower commodity prices pressuring farm profit margins, Farm Credit made more new loans to beginning farmers last year than ever before.
  • Farm Credit’s experienced loan officers understand the unique challenges beginning farmers face from the cycles of the agricultural economy.

In 2015, Farm Credit made more than $1 million in loans to beginning farmers every hour of every day.
  • Farm Credit’s commitment to beginning farmers and ranchers is second to none. Our cooperative structure guarantees that we work in the best interests of our customer-owners and U.S. agriculture.
  • Making loans to beginning farmers requires deep knowledge of local agricultural conditions and the ability to tailor financing programs to meet the unique needs of beginning producers.

Beginning farmers and ranchers received almost $13 billion in loans from Farm Credit in 2015.

  • Most beginning farmers start conservatively, borrowing smaller amounts and working to build equity in their operations over time.
  • Last year the average size Farm Credit loan to a beginning farmer or rancher was up slightly from 2014 to almost $160,000.

More than one in five Farm Credit loans was made to beginning farmers.

  • Last year more than 22 percent of the new loans made by Farm Credit were to beginning producers.
  • Over the past 10 years, new loans made by Farm Credit to beginning farmers increased by more than 45 percent.

About Farm Credit
Farm Credit supports rural communities and agriculture with reliable, consistent credit and financial services, today and tomorrow. Farm Credit has been fulfilling its mission of helping rural America grow and thrive for a century by providing farmers with the capital they need to make their businesses successful and by financing vital infrastructure and communication services. For more information about Farm Credit please visit www.farmcredit.com.