Agricultural careers

Policy actions  2 of 2

Women in agriculture

Research shows that women’s development in agriculture is vital to increasing the size of the skilled workforce, as well as unlocking talent to help drive the industry forward. 

We commissioned the Women in farming and the agricultural sector: research report which showed that whilst women are an integral and critical part of the sector, they are also a group whose contribution and skills remain marginalised. 

For example, whilst 33% of farm operators in Scotland are women, they are significantly under-represented in terms of board positions and other senior roles, including elected leadership within agricultural organisations.  This lack of representation is restricting individual talent, but is also preventing growth in the sector.      

Women in Agriculture Taskforce

The First Minister Nicola Sturgeon established a taskforce to deliver practical recommendations towards the achievement of gender equality in Scottish agriculture.  The taskforce will make its final recommendations in 2019. Read more about the Women in Agriculture Taskforce. 

Equality funding

In 2018 we awarded £250,000 to help break down the barriers which limit womens impact in the agriculture sector.

A report from the Women in Agriculture Taskforce highlighted the need to improve access for women to relevant training, increase women in leadership roles, and encourage rural bodies to advance gender equality.

Some of the funding will be used to deliver appropriate training and develop a Charter so that businesses and organisations can show their support for involving more women at all levels.

The Farm Advisory Service has set up a women in agriculture discussion group to help communication.

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