The UK’s farming and agriculture industry is facing more challenges than ever in planning for the future, as new research reveals that only 3% of 18-30 year olds would view farming and agriculture as a desirable career.
The number of farmers over the age of 65 has increased by 70% over the last ten years, while the number of under-25s has dropped by almost two-thirds over the same period.
Every industry, especially farming and agriculture, needs new talent to innovate and look to new markets, and the next generation will be vital as the sector strives to boost productivity and drive growth. Succession planning is a tremendously important topic and we’re leading the way in encouraging Britain’s farmers to start having these conversations.
To inspire the next generation of entrants to the industry we have today launched #FarmtheFuture, a nationwide campaign encouraging farmers to kick-start their succession plan. By teaming up with JLS boyband member and TV presenter JB Gill, who has swapped a life of pop stardom for rural turkey and pig farming, we also hope to inspire a younger generation to consider a career in agriculture.
The first step is clearing up the many misconceptions millennials hold about the barriers to working in the industry. Over half (59%) believe they wouldn’t be able to afford to become a farmer and four in ten (44%) think they can only break in if they inherit land.
While looking to bust these myths, our research found that farming and agriculture could, in fact, provide many millennials with their ideal career. With over three quarters (76%) saying staying physically fit and healthy while working was important to them and nearly half (48%) saying they would like to work with animals, Barclays and JB are sowing the seeds with young people about how the staple elements of farming and agriculture could tick all the boxes for their dream job.