Gender balance in farming is shifting, says NFU deputy president Minette Batters
- Credit: Lucy Taylor
The gender balance is shifting within the agri-sector with more women stepping into leading roles, according to National Farmers’ Union deputy president Minette Batters.
Speaking at the Institute of Agricultural Management’s annual conference in London, she pointed to examples such as Christine Tacon, the Groceries Code adjudicator, Helen Woolley, director general of the Country Land & Business Association, Caroline Drummond, chief executive of LEAF (Linking Environment And Farming), Teresa Dent, chief executive of the Game and Wildlift Conservation Trust, and, within the political arena, Liz Truss, Secretary of State at Defra.
The signs for the future were also promising, she added, with the number of female student entrants to Harper Adams University having double in the past five years.
However, Minette, who is the first woman to serve on the NFU’s leadershipo team, added: “We must lead by example.
“The industry needs the right people with the right skill set. Agriculture still has an image problem – it’s perceived as low paid, low skilled, unsociable hours.
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“The complexities of 21st Century farm businesses, supply chains and technologies demand different and higher level skills, regardless of gender.”
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