A while back, I read a piece in one of the farming papers on some research that had been carried out on career opportunities for young people. The study suggested that as little as 4 percent of young people would consider a job in farming, as they felt the job was boring, underpaid and in some cases, a job for those who had no other options!
I was reminded of the piece this morning when I came upon the results of a survey of those working in the agricultural sector conducted by the Farmers Weekly and De Lacy Executive recruitment consultancy (you can read the piece HERE) and felt that I would wade in on the subject.
As someone who has recently entered the industry, it absolutely blows my mind that anyone could possibly believe this job was boring, let alone beneath them!
For years I’d dreamed about getting a chance to enter this industry and worried that my lack of experience and qualifications would go against me, so the fact that there are people out there who would feel that they could be overqualified or would look down their noses at the farming world, doesn’t just bemuse me, it frankly pisses me off.
I was lucky enough to be given a chance in farming and I seized it with both hands and wouldn’t let go, and making the decision to pursue a life in farming has been the greatest decision I’ve ever made.
Over the last 18 months I’ve been lucky enough to meet wonderful, interesting people from all around the world and faced so many incredible new challenges, everything from helping to prepare show cattle to lambing for the very first time. Every day is different.
I’m always learning something new (and I’m sure any other farmer aged from 18 to 88 would tell you, you never stop learning) and farming has reignited a thirst for knowledge in me. I’ve already learnt so much in such a short period of time and farming has even persuaded me to do something I thought I would never do, and go back to school in order to learn even more and become the very best I can be. Yet there are people out there that think this is an industry for the unskilled??
Now I’m not trying to say farming is perfect, and the results of the survey show plenty of areas that could do with improving, but farming is so much more than just a job. I know it sounds so cheesy and cliched to say “It’s a way of life”, but no other job really dominates your life quite like this one. There’s no 9 to 5 working day and you can experience the highest of highs and the lowest of lows in a matter of hours but at the end of it all, it is, in my opinion at least, one of the most rewarding things you could ever do.
Farmers work bloody hard and give their blood, sweat and tears in putting food on YOUR table and it’s always disappointing when stats like this appear, showing a disconnect between modern society and, at times, a disrespect towards farmers and the work they do.
This needs to change, and I guess through the work of farmers on social media, a host of new TV shows appearing on mainstream channels and events like Open Farm Sunday, people have more opportunity than ever to gain access and discover the world of modern farming and the hard work that goes in to producing the food we all take for granted on a daily basis. Hopefully, we’ll be seeing the positives of this work in future research…