Amy Eggleston: We should be proud of this year’s achievements

I know what I’m about to say is just about as predictable as complaining about the weather, but how is it nearly December?

I feel as if I blinked during calving season in the spring, and now we’re talking about Christmas trees.

Despite being a year to remember (or perhaps forget), there is still a lot to take away from 2020, and I’ve reflected on a few things we have learned along the way.

We are lucky. Farming is a unique industry, and one we should all be proud to be a part of. This year, more than any other, I think it has shown how truly fortunate we are to call this our job.

While the majority of the nation faced the same four walls working from home, or not working at all, farmers were still able to get outside in the great British countryside and do our thing.

See also: Amy Eggleston – Be transparent, but not shocking

The great countryside

We take it for granted most days, but I truly feel it has been a privilege. Social distancing doesn’t include animals, or crops, and so, luckily, we have been able to carry on.

Local food is valuable. Throughout the turmoil of 2020, the one thing everyone has relied on is food. More than ever, food has been at the centre of everything.

The option that people can buy it locally, without rushing to a busy supermarket, is valuable. We have had a chance to show people where their food comes from, and we have grabbed it with both hands.

Local farm shops, butchers, greengrocers and food providers are crucial. Let’s not forget that.

Self care

It’s so important to look after ourselves. There is a difference between working hard and working yourself into the ground.

If you exhaust yourself, both physically and mentally, it will be detrimental to both your body and the farm.

You won’t be able to get the job done efficiently and safely, so look after yourself first. There’s no prize for being the most tired person.

It’s been quite a year. I don’t have a word to describe it, because it’s been such a roller-coaster ride, but we’ve almost made it to December and our farms have been a vital part of feeding the nation through a global pandemic.

I hope you all feel proud, and let’s be honest – probably relieved. Bring on 2021.