About

For nearly 40 years, AFT has provided a full array of support to the growing agricultural land protection community—whether through regional events and national conferences, cutting-edge research and communications insights, or technical expertise and policy innovation.

To further strengthen the collective capacity of public agencies, planning entities, and land trusts working to protect agricultural land, American Farmland Trust is launching the National Agricultural Land Network, or NALN.

The NALN will grow the capacity and momentum needed to elevate the cause of agricultural land protection across America.

NALN Services and Products
  • Peer networking through conference calls and webinars, an online communications platform, state and regional convenings, and a dedicated track at AFT’s national conferences;
  • Professional development on advanced topics of interest around agricultural land protection, land-use planning, agricultural viability, climate-smart agricultural practices, conservation planning, and land access through an electronic newsletter, trainings, discussions, and technical bulletins;
  • Trainings and technical support on the Agricultural Conservation Easement Program-Agricultural Land Easements, Regional Conservation Partnership Program, and innovative tools and techniques around agricultural land planning and protection;
  • Federal and state policy updates; trainings and information sharing on protection, access and planning policy best practices; opportunities to engage in policy design and evaluation; and access to AFT policy action alerts;
  • Communications support through a digital photo library and access to sample communications and messaging materials;
  • Access to and training on AFT’s extensive land cover data and mapping resources developed through its groundbreaking “Farms Under Threat” research study.

While the NALN will provide a forum for information sharing on federal and state legislation, regulations, programs and policies, the NALN will not itself engage in advocacy. Members will have opportunities to “opt-in” to separate AFT-coordinated advocacy efforts.

There will be two ways initially for entities to engage with the NALN:

Regular Members

The NALN seeks to provide a high level of professional networking and support to entities that are directly involved in protecting agricultural land through agricultural conservation easements or land use planning. There is no fee for membership.

Collaborators

The NALN seeks to engage and collaborate with entities and organizations that support agricultural land protection indirectly through services, programming or public policy, involving collaborators where possible and practical in the delivery of NALN services.

We invite coalitions that represent the kind of organizations that may become members, and national, regional or state-based trade associations or nonprofit organizations whose work includes the advancement of agricultural land protection or land-use policies that support agriculture. Collaborators will have access to many of the same services as members; AFT will also seek to involve collaborators where possible and practical in delivering services. This may include joint sponsorships of state or regional convenings, cosponsorship of AFT’s national conference, coordinated trainings, and shared development of resource materials. There is no cost to become a collaborator; collaborators will be asked to contribute to jointly sponsored events and trainings and development of shared resource materials.

Connect With Us

The NALN will be guided by a Steering Committee composed of representatives from members of the network. Click here to learn more.

The NALN will be directed by Cris Coffin, AFT senior policy advisor with extensive experience in state and federal agricultural and conservation policy and network creation and development.