Published Mar 9, 2018

Listening session set for “advanced” beginning farmers in Aurelia on March 13

By Tamsyn Jones

For Release: March 9, 2018


Greg Padget | Next Generation Director | Practical Farmers of Iowa | (515) 232-5661 |

AURELIA, Iowa – Practical Farmers of Iowa is seeking input from beginning farmers who have been farming for at least four years. This group of “advanced” beginning farmers faces barriers that are different from those who are just getting started, or experienced farmers who have been farming for more than 10 years.

Once farmland is secured and the farm is established, farmers face new obstacles to maintaining and growing a successful business. Some potential hurdles include securing more capital or land, and managing employees. Many beginning farmer resources don’t address the growing pains for this group of more advanced beginning farmers.

To collect input from these farmers, Practical Farmers of Iowa is hosting five listening sessions across the state. PFI will use the information gathered to devise support that can help this unique group of beginning farmers overcome these barriers and meet their farming goals.

The first event is set for Tuesday, March 13, from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Aurelia Community Center. The event is free and dinner will be provided. Farmers from all enterprises are encouraged to attend. Please RSVP at

March 13, 5:30 – 8:30 p.m.
Aurelia Community Center
235 Main St.
Aurelia, IA 51005

“I have found the need for continued guidance on labor management, business direction, improving efficiency, settling on the right markets and more,” says beginning farmer Jordan Scheibel, who operates Middle Way Farm in Grinnell.

“Supporting beginning farmers to not just start businesses, but to move toward financial and operational stability in their middle years is really critical to having a sustainable farm economy.”

The four remaining listening sessions will take place:

  • March 15 – New Hampton Public Library, New Hampton – (Chickasaw County)
  • March 20 – Practical Farmers of Iowa office, Ames – (Story County)
  • March 27 – First Street Community Center, Mt. Vernon – (Linn County)
  • March 29 – C.G. Therkildsen Activity Center, Harlan – (Shelby County)


Practical Farmers of Iowa works to equip farmers to build resilient farms and communities. Our values include: welcoming everyone; farmers leading the exchange of experience and knowledge; curiosity, creativity, collaboration and community; resilient farms now and for future generations; and stewardship of land and resources. To learn more, visit