Regional industry needs new recruits

A FARMING body is urging young people to consider a career in agriculture.

As the unemployment rate for young people, aged 16-24, broke through the one million barrier in September the Suffolk Agricultural Association (SAA) is striving to raise the profile of farming as a viable career option and to support the education of young people in how the industry operates.

SAA education officer Hannah Woods said finding new recruits was important in keeping the industry viable in the region and said much of the work they do is engaging with teenagers who are in the process of considering career choices.

“If East Anglia is to maintain its position as the bread basket of England we need to encourage our young people to consider agriculture as a viable and rewarding career option. We also need to reiterate the diversity of opportunities available and encourage agricultural businesses to consider how they can actively involve young people in the future of their organisations,” she said.

“Through our School Farm and Country Fair we enable pupils to connect with how their food is produced and give them an understanding of farming and its relationship with the management of the countryside. Over 4,000 primary school children attend the annual event.”

The SAA has also hosted a regional Grow Your Own Potatoes event as part of National Potato Planting Week.