Council for Native American Farming and Ranching

The United States Department of Agriculture's Council for Native American Farming and Ranching (CNAFR) was created to advise the Secretary on ways to eliminate barriers to participation for Native American Farmers and Ranchers in USDA programs. The Council was established as part of the  Keepseagle settlement and is pursuant to the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), as amended, 5 U.S.C. App. 2.  

The Council will be conducted under the oversight of USDA's Office of Tribal Relations, which is part of the Office of the Secretary of Agriculture. The Director of Tribal Relations serves as Designated Federal Official (DFO) for the Council. Responsibilities and conduct of the Council are defined in  CNAFR's Charter (PDF, 107KB) and Council By-Laws (PDF, 142KB).

The role of the CNAFR is to: 

  • advise the Secretary of Agriculture on issues related to the participation of Native American farmers and ranchers in USDA programs including farm loan programs;
  • transmit recommendations concerning any changes to USDA regulations or internal guidance or other measures that would eliminate barriers to program participation for Native American farmers and ranchers;
  • examine methods of maximizing the number of new farming and ranching opportunities created through USDA programs through enhanced extension and financial literacy services;
  • examine methods of encouraging intergovernmental cooperation to mitigate the effects of land tenure and probate issues on the delivery of USDA programs;
  • evaluate other methods of creating new farming or ranching opportunities for Native American producers; and
  • address other related issues as deemed appropriate.