The Office of Farmland Preservation partners with landowners, local government, soil and water conservation districts and land trusts to permanently preserve Ohio farms in agricultural production, strengthening Ohio's number one industry, food and agriculture.
Use our Resources
Information about the department's various programs as well as forms, applications and fact sheets can all be found in the resources section.
Agriculture is a land‐based industry, and farmland preservation is a key component of the Ohio Department of Agriculture’s work to maintain the state’s farming heritage while positioning Ohio for agricultural growth. Food and agriculture together constitute the state’s largest industry, contributing more than $105 billion annually to the state’s economy and providing jobs to one in seven Ohioans. The department’s Office of Farmland Preservation assists farmers, landowners and local communities with their farmland preservation efforts.
Between 1950 and 2000, Ohio lost more than 6.9 million acres of farmland, representing nearly one‐third of Ohio’s agricultural land. The department works to provide tools to farmers who want to preserve their land for future generations. The easement programs began in 2002 and has since preserved more than 540 farms totaling over 85,000 acres in 61 counties (as of August 2020). These voluntary, legal agreements among the landowner, the local community and the state ensure that farmland remains in agricultural use forever. Under an agricultural easement, the land itself stays under private ownership, but the easement prohibits any future non‐agricultural development by landowners.