Massachusetts Agricultural Commissions

About AgComs: AgCom's Mission

A town agricultural commission (AgCom) is an appointed town standing committee whose members are primarily engaged in farming and are responsible for: 

  • Representing the farming community
  • Encouraging the pursuit of agriculture
  • Promoting agricultural-based economic opportunities
  • Preserving, revitalizing, and sustaining the communities’ agricultural businesses and lands

AgComs are:

  • Mapping farms and farmlands
  • Identifying farmers' and the community's needs, issues and concerns
  • Serving as an information clearinghouse and forum for farm-town relations
  • Facilitating the technical, educational, business and regulatory assistance needed to farm and to live near farms
  • Developing trust and a working relationship among farmers, residents and institutions
  • Advocating at state and federal levels for support of community-identified agricultural needs
  • Facilitating access to conflict resolution services for farmers and the community
  • Hosting community agricultural events
  • Recommending actions on land use programs that would help agriculture thrive, including Chapter 61, tax valuation, APR and other preservation programs and right-to-farm by-laws
  • Seeking out informational and educational resources relevant to farms and farm communities
  • Matching farmers with available land and helping the landowner and the farmer promote sustained use

"Our AgCom gives farmers an opportunity to network with each other and
 work with town boards on issues that make a difference in Rehoboth and its’
 farm businesses."

~Richard Pray, 7th generation farmer, AgCom member, Oakdale Farms, Rehoboth

"Sprawl and intense development are changing the landscape of our town and the economics of farming.  In today’s world the highest and best use of our land is houses.  I want to work with my neighbors and family to keep our farm going for the next generation."
~Dawn Gates Allen, 4th generation cranberry grower, AgCom member, Gates Cranberry, Middleborough

"Our AgCom started in 1988 and was reorganized in 1997. Over the years we watched as support and assistance to farmers, from a variety of sources, was lost. Having an AgCom in Dartmouth allows our farmers and our town to take responsibility for ensuring that agriculture flourishes."
~ Susan Guiducci, Chair -Ag Preservation Trust Council, AgCom member, Apponagansett Vineyard, Dartmouth


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