Women on farms are hugely upbeat about the future and more likely to recommend it as a career to young people than their male counterparts, according to new research.

The nationwide survey, conducted by Farmers Weekly and Barclays, paints a picture of an industry with a strong – and improving – equal opportunities record.

It shows farming women to be involved in a huge array of practical activities, although many still shoulder the burden of paperwork, admin and domestic duties.

See also Results and reaction to the survey

The research – the biggest ever done in this area – reveals women (and indeed men) feel that the attitude of their parents, rather than gender issues, is often the biggest obstacle to people achieving their goals.

While the research suggests much has clearly changed compared with a generation ago, it highlights some areas to have changed less than many would like.

When it comes to succession, for example, 61% of women consider themselves “rarely” or “never” treated equally to men.