One of the stereotypes regarding agriculture in Europe is that farmers are usually older people that work their fields without perspectives for the future. The conference ‘Access to land for farmers in the EU’ held last December confirmed this data but at the same time indicated the causes for which young farmers have huge difficulties to access land. Let us start from the present picture: 45% of EU farmers are less than 55 years old, and 6% are younger than 35.
Who are the farmers of this 6%? Can we rely on their ideas, perspectives, and ambitions? In other words, can we still have hope for European agriculture?A filmmaker wanted to find answers to these questions and he collected interviews with young farmers through videos that are now available on the internet. The initiative, named Future Farmers in the Spotlight is rather inspiring and gives good hope for the future. In the interviews, difficulties are not hidden but the will for a better future where agriculture is innovative, viable and sustainable emerges with force and energy. Even more: these young farmers are from many different EU Countries: The Netherlands, Ireland, Germany, Denmark, Norway, Greece, France and Spain. They represent only a small portion of a bigger number of young farmers in all EU Member States. As a matter of fact there are estimated to be over 2 million young farmers in all of Europe. They also have a specific association, The European Council of Young Farmers – CEJA, which is supported by the European Commission.
A written test cannot replace the words of these farmers!
Listen to Serena Kapsoritaki and how she cultivates wild Cretan herbs. Follow Ask Rasmussen that manages Kiselgården, one of the oldest biodynamic farms in Denmark. See Darragh Flynn and how he grows wheatgrass and many different types of sprouts that he delivers all over Ireland.
Only looking and listening to what these young farmers explain, you may understand that, despite difficulties, the future of food and agriculture in Europe is without a doubt something they are already building