The average age of the Australian farmer is in their late 50s with less than 15 per cent under the age of 35 according to government figures. With this in mind, combined with uncertainty in our local and export markets, dry or wet weather, climate change or cost of inputs, many farmers will be considering their options. Do they expand and work on a larger scale or do they take the opportunity to exit the industry. As a livestock agent we normally have a very close working relationship with our clients over, in many cases, generations. Related reading: So, when the time comes, we as agents inevitably become involved, from the simple question of what is my country worth to the very difficult one of how do I keep everybody happy? The joy of farming and farming families is that they are never the same. From more than one sibling wishing to come home to the other extreme of no one looking to come home. If they want to continue, is there a need to expand, is there land available, is it close and the "million dollar question" of what is the price? We have seen land values increase as the demand grows. The ability of young farmers to afford to get into the market is getting more difficult unless they are backed by family. The added pressure from larger farming operations or corporate operations is an added pressure to prices. With these issues only scratching the surface of what needs to be considered, it is important to seek advice and plan. As we know, most farmers believe they will live forever and never retire but it is never too early to discuss options. Many will not retire even if a son or daughter does come home to the farm and will continue to offer helpful advice. I cannot stress enough how important that initial chat around the kitchen table is and the need to seek advice. It is not just the family farm but a business and it needs to have a plan for the future. Asking the family accountant or stock agent is not enough.