Farm turnover are going to be big in the next decade, Weber says

ST. PAUL - Sen. Bill Weber today said predictions show that in the next decade, the farmers in the state will have the greatest transfer of assets from one generation to the next that has occurred in modern times, which will be stressful to the families trying to work those transfers out.

"Because of the current downturn in the farm economy, we probably have some of our older farmers that have continued on a little longer because it's difficult to transfer asset to the next generation when were having poor prices and high costs for the farm economy," Weber said.

Even as families try to work it out, Weber said, the conversations can be challenging.

Currently, the state has an individual who works with farm managements programs in the state college system, traveling across the state to speak with farmers who are having emotional or mental health issues. Weber said it is an effective and unique way of dealing with a large problem, and as problems on the farm increase, so does the need for the service.

Last year, there was money put into a budget for additional services, but the bill was vetoes by the governor. This year, Weber said, they hope to more fully fund the farm management program and bring on more mental health counselors and other services in connection with the state college system.

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