After a rapid decline in the number of black farmers over the past century, a new generation of black farmers are reclaiming their relationship with the land.
For Ransome, who admits to getting in trouble in his youth, his discovery of agriculture was an awakening:
“When people think of a farmer, I believe they think of a poor peasant, someone that’s uneducated, just of the land, you know, just likes to get dirty. I don’t think people really grasp the significance of farming, or the role of the farmer.”
Ransome’s transition wasn’t easy. He “had nothing to work with,” at first. And folks thought he was crazy.
But he’s made it work—without loans, grants or handouts—and he and Penniman are setting the standard for a whole new generation.