John Ikerd details a possible path for advancing Sustainable Farming in his article Farmland for New Sustainable Farmers: A Capitalist Approach to Land Reform. Ikerd shares a scenario for transitioning the 91.5 million acres of farmland that is projected to change ownership over the next 5 years into smaller sustainable family farms. Taking into account the desires for existing farm families to pass on inheritance to their family and financial obstacles facing Land Trusts among other considerations, Ikerd proposes a capitalism based solution galvanizing long vision billionaire investors through the principles of Sustainable Capitalism.
The article details a diverse ecosystem of arrangements for helping new farmers lease or own land, for helping transform large farming operations into smaller family farms, and for using different residential-farming scenarios to afford the speculative cost of the land.
Ikerd gives hope that we can create a sustainable solution which satisfies the many communities wanting local food, the myriad of young farmers wishing they could afford land, and the hundreds of old farm families who their beloved land to be tended with care after they are gone.