Young Beginning & Small Farmer

Young, Beginning And Small Farmers Program

Farm Credit of Southern Colorado makes loans for the purchase, improvement or refinancing of debt on farms, ranches, facilities and rural real estate.

Our Mission

Our organization is dedicated to improving the future of agriculture and rural America by supporting and educating young, beginning and small farmers and ranchers. We have made it part of our mission to provide resources to them to help ensure a strong future for agriculture.


The objectives of our young, beginning and small farmer and rancher program are:

  • To increase the number of young, beginning and small farmers and ranchers in the Association’s loan portfolio
  • To provide managerial education and financial training opportunities to young, beginning and small farmers and ranchers
  • To build long-term relationships that develop this group of customers into a loyal and profitable customer base for the future

A Young Beginning or Small Farmer

A young farmer or rancher is one who is 35 years of age or younger. A beginning farmer or rancher is defined as one who is in the process of establishing an agricultural operation and who has not assumed full control and risk of the operation for longer than 10 years. A small farmer is one who generates less than $250,000 in annual gross sales.

Unique Challenges

Young, beginning and small farmers and ranchers face unique challenges, including:

  • A lack of equity
  • Little or no risk-bearing capacity
  • Developing the management skills and experience needed to manage the business
Unique Programs Offered By Farm Credit Of Southern Colorado
  • Special exceptions to credit underwriting standards
  • Special pricing considerations
  • Loan officer time devoted to doing financial analysis of past years and projections
  • Loan guarantee assistance

Underwriting Standards

The Association has adopted special underwriting standards in the areas of owner equity and working capital ratios, capital debt repayment capacity and collateral to address the needs of our young, beginning and small farmers. Each situation is considered on an individual basis. Loan officers look for a sound business plan.

Pricing Considerations

Rates are determined by each individual’s financial position. However, we have special pricing options available under certain limitations. Government guaranteed loans have a specific pricing advantage.

Loan Guarantee Assistance

We can assist qualified farmers in obtaining loan guarantees available through the Farm Service Agency farm loan program. Our staff will assist qualified applicants with the necessary forms and paperwork to complete an FSA Guarantee request.