CLEMSON, S.C. — The annual South Carolina Farmer Resource Rodeo is back — virtually, for now — after a 2-year pandemic break to offer a unique opportunity for farmers to learn about useful resources for their business and connect directly with provider representatives.
On Friday, Sept. 9, Clemson Cooperative Extension’s S.C. New and Beginning Farmer Program (SCNBFP) will host the online event, which targets the needs and interests of aspiring, new, beginning and small- to medium-scale farms.
The $25 registration fee for this full-day event includes a digital directory of all participating agencies. A registration link and more information are available here.
“We are pleased to have the opportunity to bring back the Resource Rodeo,” says Ben Boyles, SCNBFP director. “Farming can often seem like a solitary occupation, and farmers are not always aware of the vast number of resources available to them. Through this event, we are not only able to introduce famers to invaluable sources of assistance but give them opportunity to connect directly with resource representatives.”
The day will include five blocks of presentations from more than 40 organizations. Presentations will be delivered in a speed-round format, where each speaker will deliver a brief overview of their organization and services, and each session will be followed up with a 30-minute Q&A session where attendees will be able engage with providers one on one.
Represented in the event are resources that include: education and Extension, lenders, grants, and cost-share programs, land and production resources, state and federal agencies, regulatory bodies, non-profit assistance and more.
SCNBFP is a Clemson University Cooperative Extension-Agribusiness public education program focused on enabling new and beginning farmers to be successful, productive and innovative members of their local agricultural community by providing them with the tools, knowledge and skills necessary to be successful entrepreneurs, sound business managers, exemplary stewards of the natural environment and successful marketers of the unique products they create.
“Most importantly, the SCNBFP seeks to develop individuals who have a sense of pride and enjoy a quality of life because of their investment and participation in South Carolina’s No. 1 industry — agriculture,” Boyles said.
The program also fills a critical need to train emerging farmers in South Carolina.
“With the average age of South Carolina farmers now up to 59 years, we put our state’s largest industry at risk if we do not invest efforts into encouraging and training the next generation of successful agripreneurs,” Boyles said. “At a time when consumer demand for local, high-quality, nutritious farm products is on the rise, there is tremendous opportunity for rural economic development through a thriving local farm and food system.”