Animal Science Department


Date of this Version



Presented at Range Beef Cow Symposium XXII, November 29, 30, and December 1, 2011, Mitchell, Nebraska. Sponsored by Cooperative Extension Services and the Animal Science Departments of the University of Wyoming, Colorado State University, South Dakota State University, and the University of Nebraska–Lincoln.



*****The average age of America's farmers and ranchers is SS

*****There are twice as many farmers over the age of 6S as under the age of 35

*** **Half of agricultural land is owned by folks older than 75

*****69% want to pass their farms or ranches on to their children

*****Only 3-5% of farm and ranch families in Colorado have a complete estate plan

*****The Family Farm Institute reports that only a third of all family businesses succeed in the second generation and a mere 15% survive to the third and 5% make it to the fourth.

*****Statistics indicate the number of cattle operations has declined 20 percent since 1981 *****As inflation rises and land values go up, more land and livestock are needed to support a family

*****AGRICULTURE SHOULD BE PUSHING FOR INFLATION INDEXING. To tax the full capital gain is wrong, because much of the value is the result of inflation.

*****The Death Tax is a government seizure of family owned and operated businesses

*****By splitting up and destroying viable farming and ranching operations, the death tax erodes the base of the rural economy

*****The death tax accounts for only 1 per cent of federal revenues

*****Research indicates that: 42% of the first generation farm families have not discussed the subject of farm succession with their spouses; 63% of the first generation have not discussed succession with the second generation (their own children). Only 16% had included the son or daughter in conversations about succession. Most older generation farmers and ranchers, surveyed, indicated that tithe farm" would be the source of their retirement income.