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Recent figures suggest that a shortage of well-trained workers is threatening the future of farming in the East. Easton and Otley College has trained generations of agricultural workers however recently they have said not enough people have been entering the industry. In particular there has been a shortage of people with the technical skills to operate complex farm machinery.
The National Farmers Union (NFU) has said they are trying to address the shortfall by working with employers and colleges.
Martyn Davey of Easton and Otley College has said: "We have seen the age of farmers getting older and older and we recognised this at Easton College probably 20 years ago. If we don't have more technicians coming in and being trained up to management level, then obviously the industry would eventually fold and food prices would go through the roof."
The challenge it to attract young people, however Mr Davey fears other industries may tempt them away. Pamela Forbes, NFU East Anglia regional director has said that an estimated "70,000 farmers and farm workers will have to be recruited nationally in the next five years to meet the demand."
Read the article here: Farming 'at risk' from lack of well-trained workers
on 10 October 2012