Alabama A&M University, an 1890 land-grant and historically black university, sought to assist limited resource and socially disadvantaged beginning farmers and ranchers (SDBFRs) in Alabama's Strike-Force communities. Through strategic partnership with key organizations and existing networks, the project assisted 150 SDBFRs and reach a diverse group of over 2,000 producers comprising African-Americans, Native-Americans, Hispanic-Americans, Asians, and other under-served groups. Through this project the Center was able to complete the following;
Developed and assembled culturally and linguistically appropriate materials for effective training and timely dissemination to limited resource and SDBFRs:
- Conducted marketing education and training for risk mitigation in specialty and direct markets;
- Enhance the viability of under-served farms by facilitating their access to financing and asset building programs and services;
- Conducted crop insurance, financial, and business planning training for SDBFRs; and
- Promoted crop insurance awareness and risk management education opportunities among producers through print, electronic media, radio, television and relationships with grassroots organizations.
Project resulted in enhanced producer knowledge of production, marketing and financial risks. Some topic areas included increased access to capital, participation in crop insurance, cost-share, farm loans, record keeping and other USDA programs. Efforts sough to improve marketing and land management practices; and ultimately enhanced farm profitability and overall sustainability.