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Keeping people connected in the Agri sector

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With lockdown restrictions easing across the UK, shops and restaurants starting to re-open and a sense of some sort of normality resuming, the impact of Covid-19 still remains. Over the past few months technology has played a key part in keeping people connected. People who never expected, and perhaps, never wanted to use digital technology to communicate have had to adapt either to keep their business going or to keep in contact with their family and friends. From posting photos on social media to attending online webinars, laptops, mobile devices and tablets have been a lifesaver for many.

One of the most impacted sectors during Covid19 has been the Agricultural sector and whilst it has mostly been business as usual for farmers in recent weeks, the cancellation of all the agricultural shows and farming events across the summer will affect farmers and rural communities across the UK. Although not bringing the same economic or tragic consequences, a lack of shows means a significant financial loss and way of life for many businesses in the agricultural sector. These annual events showcase the best in farming and food and bring as much celebration as they do trading platforms for businesses, this year it is, perhaps, the social aspect that will be one of the biggest loss to the farming community.

Brian Richardson, UK Head of Agriculture explains:

“Farming can be a lonely job at the best of times, so agricultural shows are a real chance to get out, socialise and make connections with other like-minded people.”

Even though these shows will be sorely missed, since the Covid-19 pandemic began the industry has been ensuring they remain connected, where possible, via virtual platforms. Whether this be social platforms such as LinkedIn and Facebook or attending online webinars with key businesses and influencers in the sector. It doesn’t make up for leaning against the sheep pens for a chat at the local show but sharing experiences are vital components of agriculture and the shows support mental wellbeing so keeping in touch and looking out for each other is critical for the farming and rural communities.

Olly Harrison, Partner at T&O Harrison Farms said:

“Covid19 has brought a less hectic and slower pace of life which has been welcomed. It has brought new people to the countryside who have been interested in what is happening on the farm and what we are doing which has been nice. Whilst I won’t be able to attend any shows this summer, lockdown has encouraged me to increase my social media activity and in turn meet new people and keep connected in a new way. I really enjoy using social media and find that you get out of it what you put in, I have been on everyday since the beginning of lockdown and find that with the more followers I get the more I can do to raise key issues within the sector.”

POSTED IN: Day to Day Banking,2020


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