Family farms make up about 80 per cent of Britain’s agricultural landscape but a lack of planning for the future is putting many at risk.
Supported by our industry partners: ABP, Farmers & Mercantile, NSF Agriculture and Volac, Farmers Guardian’s Year of the Family Farm series has been launched to address the issues facing family farms and identify opportunities which will help them become fit for the future.
Part 12 - Key themes from the year
Farmers Guardian’s Year of the Family Farm initiative, which drew to a close this week, has driven a thought-provoking and challenging conversation covering some of the most important aspects of agricultural life. Experts have offered their advice on how farmers can begin to tackle wellknown stigmas, as well as offering ideas for how businesses can become more resilient, futureproof and progressive. Advice has been broad, but themes have emerged from the topics tackled.
Part 11 - Conflict resolution
In part two of our conflict resolution special, we look at how farms can best prepare to reduce the crippling effects a death or divorce can have on the business.
It may be a stigma to discuss what will happen when death or divorce hits a family farm.
Part 10 - Conflict resolution
Family-run farms are the backbone of British agriculture. In fact, they are the heartbeat of farming across the globe.
More than 90 per cent of the world’s 570 million farms rely primarily on family labour.
Part 8 - Succession
No series on the issues facing family farms is complete without mention of succession.
Farmers may grow tired of being told about the importance of planning how the business will evolve in the next 10, 25 or 50 years, yet the simple reality is that not enough of them are doing it. Without question, a poor approach to succession planning has the potential to create one of the most inflammatory situations to take place on a family farm.
Aside from buying farmland, investing in machinery is likely to be the most significant capital outlay facing family farms.
Fortunately, tyre-kicking and negotiation on price come naturally to a lot of farmers, but when it comes to financing the purchase, how many businesses truly evaluate all their options?
It takes an open-minded farmer to admit they could run their business better. In the relentless drive to improve efficiency, comparing how one farm business is performing against others can be a powerful tool in highlighting where costs can be cut.
Professional development should not be overlooked by family farms. According to Philip Wynn, master of the Worshipful Company of Farmers, nurturing the skills of individuals within a family farming business has never been so important.
See what David Kidd has to say on making a success of succession
Listen to what dairy farmer James Wright has to say about benchmarking
Take a look at how Josh Dowbiggin makes the most of his opportunities
Find out more about rural housing from Di Wastenage
Share farming is popular in places like Australia and New Zealand, but why hasn't it taken off in the UK?
FG’s Year of the Family Farm series will focus on the following topics.