By Emily Davies. Posted on
Five years of Just Farmers
In 2016 our founder Anna Jones set off on a two-year journey, travelling the world looking at how the mainstream media reports on farming issues across the globe for her Nuffield Farming Scholarship.
The idea for Just Farmers was sparked by Anna's research, discovering a deep disconnect between farming communities and the mainstream, predominantly urban media - driven mostly by a lack of trust and transparency.
Anna wanted to give farmers the skills and confidence to step forward and share their stories, while helping colleagues in the media build more contacts in rural areas - and so, on 25th September 2018 Just Farmers was established and opened its doors to the first 12 farmers to take part in our media education workshops.
Group one on our first ever workshop in Bristol in 2018
Since then, Just Farmers has provided fully funded media education to 84 farmers, who represent a diverse mix across agriculture.
Between them, they have had nearly 1,000 connections with the media, which can include anything from a research chat with a journalist on the phone to an on-the-record interview. This has led to our farmers enjoying more than 600 regional, national and international media and public appearances. Some are now major influencers on social media or well-known ambassadors for British Farming.
And we have more than 300 members of the media registered on our online database, ranging from national newspapers like The Guardian, Mail on Sunday and The Times, to national broadcasters BBC, ITV and Sky, high-profile programmes including BBC Breakfast, GB News, Good Morning Britain, Countryfile, BBC Radio 4 and Radio 5 Live, podcasts, trade press titles like Farmers Weekly and Farmers Guardian, independent production companies and filmmakers, even global news outlets including The Tokyo Chunichi Shimbun, Norway's Nationen, Finland's Maaseudun Tulevaisuus and France Télévisions.
Our success is a testament to the amazing farmers who took the plunge, stepped out of their comfort zone and opened up to the world’s media to be a part of Just Farmers.