ASPIRE Act aims to connect people to careers in agriculture

Legislation that addresses workforce shortages in agriculture has been introduced in the U.S. Senate.

Minnesota Democrat Tina Smith tells Brownfield the Agriculture Skills Preparation for Industry Recruitment Efforts, or ASPIRE Act, gets at an issue she’s heard a lot about from farmers.

“The average age of farmers is about 57, and that number is trending up. And we know that farming and ranching is a great business, but it’s hard work and it’s hard to break in, especially if you don’t come from a farm family yourself.”

She says the bill would set up work-based training programs, internships, and apprenticeships through colleges, universities, and nonprofits like the National Young Farmers Coalition.