Shropshire Star Farming Talk: Encouraging the next generation
It is important to the CLA that we encourage and nurture the next generation of farmers and rural business owners.
With the farming sector having an average age of 59, talented, hardworking people will always be needed to produce high quality, local food.
Recently attending Church Stretton School, which is situated in a truly beautiful part of our region surrounded by the South Shropshire hills, I discussed career opportunities within the rural sector with pupils.
Being able to work outside in our wonderful countryside is a real privilege, and many pupils were excited by the variety of so many rural jobs and careers available to them, outside of the ones frequently talked about.
They showed interest in areas such as food production, farm to fork, machinery and animal husbandry, as well as forestry and plant science. There really is something for everyone and there are wider opportunities associated with managing the land.
Society needs to have people out on the ground looking after our countryside.
Shropshire is blessed with many opportunities for those looking to establish a fulfilling and successful rural based career.
There are many farming opportunities, rural apprenticeships and higher education establishments including Harper Adams University, North Shropshire College and Reaseheath College in Cheshire.
The CLA recently ran a very popular Next Generation event at Bradford Estates which allowed delegates to network, and the opportunity to share business strategies for the future.
We must continue to inspire young people to join rural enterprises.
by John Greenshields, Rural Surveyor, Country Land and Business Association