A new survey with more than 500 respondents from across the UK has shown what farmers and agricultural professionals are the proudest of in their industry; these include innovation, sustainability, community, resilience, quality of produce and high animal welfare standards.
Organised by the Farming Help charities (the Farming Community Network, Addington Fund and Forage Aid), the survey was circulated ahead of Lamma and revealed a wide range of reasons about why farmers are so passionate and optimistic.
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”
Respondents were also asked if they would personally speak to a farming charity if they felt they needed support, with over 70% saying they would. Those who were hesitant, expressed an interest in learning more about charity services, while others mentioned feeling embarrassed asking for help.
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.
“We know picking up the phone and asking for help is often the hardest step; we hope to normalise speaking to charities before people reach a crisis point and before people have exhausted other options. The sooner we are contacted, the sooner we can support and help people find a positive way forward, whatever the problem or concern may be.
“We also wanted to use this opportunity to promote the many great things about UK farming and to help remind people of the passion, dedication and hard work of our vital farming community.”