Diana Lenzi, President of CEJA, has warned that “if we do not solve the issues of land and credit access, in particular, we will not have a cohort of young farmers entering the sector across Europe”.
That is what she told attendees of Macra na Feirme’s Agricultural Conference on Friday, November 26th, 2021.
The European Council of Young Farmers represents over 2 million young farmers across Europe.
Diana outlined some of the common challenges facing young farmers across Europe during the virtual meeting.
Commenting at the conference, Diana said: “There are three traditional roadblocks for young farmers: access to land, credit and knowledge and skills.”
“We cannot tackle land access or knowledge without access to credit and financing,” she added.
Women in agriculture
She was later asked about challenges facing young women entering the agricultural field.
In response, she said: “It is important to speak up and be the voice of our own interests.”
“We often hear a lot of policymakers speaking about young female farmers, but they are doing it without the knowledge of the challenges facing young female farmers.”
“Young female farmers want to have the tools to address the barriers facing young women entering agriculture.”
Installation aid for young farmers
The CEJA president also highlighted the importance of installation aid in other EU member states to support young farmers establishing their farming enterprises upon entry to the sector.
The conference heard that Ireland is one of only five member states where young farmers do not receive installation aid or start-up business support.
Macra na Feirme national president, John Keane, has regularly called for start-up business supports in the next CAP for young farmers entering agriculture.
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