Farm Credit Centennial

Farm Credit Centennial

On July 17, 1916, President Woodrow Wilson signed the Federal Farm Loan Act, creating the Farm Credit System, a network of lending and service institutions designed to provide dependable credit and other resources to the nation’s farmers, ranchers, cooperatives, and rural communities. The establishment of the Farm Credit System was the culmination of a decades-long struggle for reliable, affordable agricultural credit, something that commercial banks offering high-interest, short-term loans had been unable to provide. The federal government responded by creating a cooperative government-sponsored enterprise tasked with lending to farmers and ranchers throughout the country. The first Farm Credit institutions to be chartered were the Federal Land Banks, which provided long-term real estate loans through locally established offices called National Farm Loan Associations, renamed Federal Land Bank Associations in 1959. Twelve Federal Land Banks were chartered in the spring of 1917, each with its own district. The Federal Land Bank of Berkeley was chartered on April 3rd and it served borrowers in the states of Arizona, California, Nevada, and Utah. This territory was known as the Eleventh Farm Credit District.

Today, Farm Credit West serves farmers and ranchers across three states with diversity in commodities, operation size, age, farming experience, cultures, and language preferences. At Farm Credit West we recognize that each customer and operation is unique. We appreciate what each customer brings to the table, and we strive to meet your operation’s financial needs while providing the best customer service around.

  • 1916

    JULY 17 President Wilson signs the federal Farm Loan Act creating the Federal Land Bank System.
  • 1917

    East Side Paso Robles NFLA — formed in April — was one of the first established associations in Farm Credit West’s lineage.
  • 1933

    As the Great Depression bottomed out, Farm Credit added short-term loans through Production Credit Associations.
  • 1959

    National Farm Loan Associations were renamed to Federal Land Bank Associations.
  • 1968

    The Farm Credit System became fully customer-owned when the last of the stock held by the Federal Government was retired in 1968.
  • 1971

    Farm Credit Act of 1971 expanded lending to rural homeowners, commercial fishermen, and businesses providing on-the-farm services.
  • 1980's

    The farm crisis of the 80's was the catalyst for the Agricultural Credit Act of 1987, which included a major restructuring and financial assistance for the Farm Credit System.
  • 2002

    Central Coast Farm Credit and Valley AgCredit merged to form Farm Credit West and the first cash patronage was paid to customer-owners.
  • 2005

    The Farm Credit System repays the last of the financial assistance provided during the 80's farm crisis.
  • 2008

    Sacramento Valley Farm Credit and Farm Credit West merged.
  • 2015

    Farm Credit West acquired Farm Credit Services Southwest as a wholly owned subsidiary under a Plan of Merger.
  • 2018

    FCW announces 1% Patronage Distribution to member-owners