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  •  The banking system has something to do... (9+ / 0-)

    with the concentration of land into the hands of very few people. I have attended a number of land auctions over the years. Where I live (Logan County, KY), a small handful of farmers buy up every parcel that comes up for sale. Apparently, if you already owe tens or hundreds of millions of dollars, you can get tens of millions more. A young person starting out would have no hope to buy a small farm, even if a small farm sized parcel came up for sale. Land at auction around here has been selling for up to $5000 per acre and even higher. That would make a 50 acre parcel bring $250,000. Banks don't hand out that kind of money to someone with no equity. It would take a collapse of the current farm credit system to give any chance for land to be bought by anyone besides the current pool of buyers.

    •  The price of land (6+ / 0-)

      is a major problem for new farmers. Land just isn't priced for farming--you can't make enough money to pay for it in too many places. In fact, the economic system just isn't made for farming. It's not viable for most people.

      I think that will have to change. It's not tenable. As climate change and fossil fuel depletion begins to fray the industrial agriculture system, we're going to have to start making some tough choices when it comes to food. I wouldn't be surprised if we saw a land redistribution program a few decades down the road, though it may take longer than that. I'll be surprised if it doesn't happen eventually, though.

      Of The Hands - Thoughts on voluntary poverty, homesteading, farming, reconnecting to the land, doing good work, and muddling through the new no-growth economy.

      by aimlessmind on Fri Feb 08, 2013 at 07:29:27 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  $8300 an acre is Iowa average (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cantelow, Kevskos, aimlessmind, worldlotus

      Probably a bubble but most of those buying are other farmers and debt is much lower than it was in the '80s when farmers got burned before.  

    •  Another problem is that corporations (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      aimlessmind, worldlotus

      don't die.  They don't have heirs that don't want to farm and sell the land to someone who does.  

      Renewable energy brings national global security.     

      by Calamity Jean on Fri Feb 08, 2013 at 03:13:20 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

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