Younger farmers investing for the future

Younger farmers investing for the future

Younger farmers are investing to create new opportunities and are committed to getting the most out of their businesses.

Younger Australian farmers are the most likely to invest in both their farming businesses and their own skills, according to Commonwealth Bank research.

The research, gathered as part of the Commonwealth Bank Agri Insights survey, shows that farmers under 45 years of age have stronger investment intentions across a range of measures.

Darryl Mohr, Commonwealth Bank’s Regional and Agribusiness Banking General Manager for Victoria and Tasmania, said the results show that younger farmers are committed to getting the most out of their operations.

“Agribusiness is becoming a more complex and technologically driven sector. Farmers recognise that success means investment not only in the farm itself, but also in their own continued upskilling and in working with the right specialist partners,” Mr Mohr said.

According to the survey, younger farmers are almost twice as likely to be undertaking further education or skills training than those over 45 years of age, with 23 per cent of the younger group planning more education, compared with only 12 per cent of the older group.

At the same time, younger farmers are five times more likely than older farmers to be planning to buy more land (10 per cent of younger farmers versus 2 per cent of over-45s).

“This is all about working hard to create new opportunities. We’re seeing farmers, especially those in the mid-career bracket, investing strongly for success over the longer term. The overall picture is one of a highly engaged, optimistic group of young and middle-aged farmers, ready to take on new opportunities for growth in the sector,” Mr Mohr said.

Other areas where the investment intentions of younger farmers outstrip those of the older generation include fixed infrastructure (42 per cent vs 33 per cent), and technology (28 per cent vs 17 per cent).

This story was first published in Leading Agriculture magazine.