Saturday, March 28, 2020

Mental health among hot topics at conference

February 28, 2020 by  
Filed under News & Business

A record-breaking 400 farmers, exhibitors and industry experts attended last month’s Lincolnshire Farming Conference.

Innovation, mental health and climate change were the key discussion points at the one-day event – hosted by the Lincolnshire Agricultural Society on 11 February at the Lincolnshire Showground.

NFU vice president Stuart Roberts urged delegates to look after one another and their mental health as the industry prepares for major reforms – including the phasing out of direct payments – now the UK has left the European Union.

“Farming is now beginning to address some of the big issues facing our society, including mental health and climate change. If we are to continue to have a mandate to farm, we have got to be the solution to society’s challenges. We all need to work together.

“We need to be better at working together as farmers and better at working together with others in the supply chain, including those who manufacture machinery, invent machinery, buy our products and those who add value to our products. We’ve got to get better at collaboration.

“As farmers, we have the opportunity to really address climate change. We are the custodians to some of the most precious resources, whether that be carbon or water, and it has to be us telling that story and really making a change.”

Some 85% of young farmers believe mental health is the biggest danger facing the industry, according to the Farm Safety Foundation. Encouraging people to talk openly about the issue, Mr Roberts said: I can’t stress enough how important it is for farmers to look after one another.”

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