This is a communications project for British agriculture. Our aim is to build confidence among farmers and growers about talking to the media; while helping journalists and programme makers find independent, authentic voices at the grassroots of farming.
Why do we do this?
We understand that farming is one of the most misunderstood jobs in modern society, and when a group feels disconnected from the rest of society it drives polarisation and division, which gets in the way of positive action on the climate and nature crisis.
By giving farmers the confidence to tell their stories with pride, Just Farmers is working to bridge the divide not just between farmers and the urban media, but with the consumer too - so that the general public has a better understanding of where their food comes from and the challenges that we all face around food security.
We give farmers and growers the confidence to tell their stories with pride through free Media Education workshops (four days in total) and we are constantly searching for volunteers from all walks of farming life. We are open to everyone whether you’re large or small scale; organic or conventional; raising livestock indoors or outdoors. We want farmers who believe in the importance of open communication, and will always have an open door to the media - even on a bad news day.
For the Media...
We know it’s not always easy finding good talkers without a wider agenda, and we know negotiating access on to farms can be tricky. Just Farmers is about connecting you with knowledgeable, independent case studies willing to share their experiences, and answer all your questions. Just Farmers is not-for-profit and non-political. We do not lobby or speak on behalf of the wider industry. So far, we have 84 farmers in our network, who represent the full diversity of UK agriculture.
Meet the Farmers
Just Farmers is generously supported by
"The Frank Parkinson Agricultural Trust is delighted to support Anna’s initiative and we hope that a group of independent farmers who are willing to talk to the press about their own farms without criticising others will help bridge the gap between the rural and urban communities.”
David Gardner, Trustee, Frank Parkinson Agricultural Trust
"The Just Farmers concept will work because it delivers for journalists - a breed who are sometimes ignorant, usually time poor and occasionally lazy. I know, I am one. A one stop, curated resource of independent, articulate, engaged farmers will be a great asset to farming and journalism.”
Tom Heap, Broadcaster and Journalist for BBC Countryfile, Costing the Earth and Panorama.
“It is of no benefit to the farming industry to remain silent in the face of growing pressures. An actual farmer talking about his or her farm, as opposed to an industry representative, especially if the farmer has been trained to articulate their thoughts well, is far more powerful and far more likely to be trusted by the public. The public need to understand the personalities and real life case studies behind the topics being discussed in the media.”
Rob Mercer, farmer and supporter of Just Farmers
“Farmers have to be willing to open up and answer difficult questions for the general public, and us as journalists, to be able to better understand their perspective. It is also our job as journalists to sometimes challenge these perspectives. We as reporters love to hear from people on the ground, personal experience and most importantly someone willing to give an honest insight into the industry.”
Mari Grug, Video Journalist, BBC Cymru Wales
“In the pre and post Brexit world, farming needs to make sure its voice is heard in the media. We need to hear from the farmers themselves – the people who put food on the table. Just Farmers is a brilliant idea – arming the farmers with the tools to articulate their story and resource for journalists to enable them to make direct contact with the farmers in the field.”
Sybil Ruscoe, journalist and broadcaster.
“I fully support the Just Farmers project. Trying to explain to the general public why so many farmers are struggling can be an enormous challenge. Farmers are not portrayed in a way that is worthy of any compassion. I believe this project will go a long way in raising awareness of the volatility of the farming industry and give a much-needed voice to the grass-root farmer.”
Sam Conway, The Farming Community Network