The average age of working farmers is over 55 and there is concern that more needs to be done to attract youngsters into the industry.
But at the Buckinghamshire Young Farmers Rally on Saturday there was no shortage of enthusiastic youngsters eager to embrace their agricultural ancestry.
Hosted by Edgcott and Winslow and supported by all the other YFC clubs in the county, it was a day to showcase the countryside with competitions ranging from stock judging to tug of war.
Arch Dancer, 22, a member of the host club, said: “I am a working farmer and being a farmer’s son I know I won’t make millions, but I’m happy to work from 6am to 10pm when I need to. It’s a way of life and I love it, I enjoy every aspect of it, stock work with cattle and sheep and also sitting on a tractor all day.”
Although Arch didn’t win the sheep shearing competition he entered, he was thrilled that his club won both the mens and ladies tug of war competitions and the rally overall.
“We haven’t won for several years,” he said, “so it’s a real boost for the club.”
Former Edgcott and Winslow Young Farmer Rachel Young enjoyed a lovely day at the show with her little boy Harvey, aged 20 months, and she hopes he will choose farming as a career.
She said: “I think it’s important to encourage young people into the industry. It’s a lovely way of life, a lot of outdoor working with lovely people and a lot of lads like to be kept busy and like the big bits of machinery. I would be very happy for Harvey to be a farmer.”
The rally was a huge success and well supported by all the Bucks clubs including Aylesbury, Princes Risborough and Long Crendon. Princes Risborough came second in the rally overall and in the tug of war competitions.