Innovation, sustainability, high standards of animal welfare and a strong sense of community are among the key reasons farmers are proud of agriculture in the UK, a new survey has revealed.
Organised by the Farming Help charities (The Farming Community Network, Addington Fund and Forage Aid) and circulated in advance of LAMMA 2023 (10-11 January), the survey of more than 500 farmers and agricultural professionals has revealed a wide range of reasons why they feel passionate and optimistic about farming and food production.
When asked ‘What makes you proud of the UK agricultural industry?’, responses included:
“The way farmers help each other in times of need”
“Resilience, reliability, responsibility and determination to be the best”
“The heritage, professionalism, commitment and determination of the families involved, at the same time working with nature”
“Innovation. Support. Community. Collaboration. Humble people keeping their heads down and working hard for the benefit of others”
“How we club together if someone needs help, we are one big family and we never let anyone struggle alone”
“We are the backbone of the UK. We support the whole nation and give our very best work to everyone in the form of food – both vegetarian and meat products”
The survey also asked if respondents would personally speak to a farming charity if they felt they needed support, with over 70% saying they would.
Some of those who were hesitant to speak with a charity expressed an interest in learning more about charity services, while some mentioned feeling embarrassed asking for help or finding it challenging to talk about personal feelings and experiences.
Alex Phillimore, Head of Communications and Development at The Farming Community Network, said: “The Farming Help charities conducted this survey to learn more about the industry’s awareness of the wide range of charity support available to people in agriculture, as well as to better understand some of the reasons why people might be hesitant to speak to a charity.’
To provide further information about the work of the Farming Help charities, and to celebrate the hard work of farmers, two panel discussions will be taking place at LAMMA 2023 at Birmingham NEC on 10 and 11 January:
- On Tuesday 10 January (2:30pm – 3:15pm) the charities will be joined by Andrew Ward MBE, Will Roobottom and Anna Longthorp to debunk some of the myths surrounding agriculture and highlight the many ways farmers care for their livestock, protect the environment and keep the nation fed.
- On Wednesday 11 January (1:30pm – 2:00pm) the charities will be teaming up with Jeremy Gibbs, founder of Forces Farming and Forces into Agriculture, to talk about wellbeing support in the workplace, including creating a healthy and safe workplace culture, supporting colleagues and spotting the signs of mental ill-health.