Farmer Focus: It’s our job to educate consumers

Well, we are no longer Open Farm Sunday virgins. We finally plucked up enough courage and opened our farm up.

Biosecurity is a massive issue for us as pig farmers, so we started small and did an invite-only day – mainly Vicky’s friends from the school her children go to.

This meant we knew everyone who came and, more importantly, knew they hadn’t been on any other pig units.

We decided to have three time slots and did a general walk around the unit, making sure it not only informed and entertained the children, but the adults learned something as well.

See also: Read more from the Livestock Farmer Focus writers 

I think it’s fair to say it was a massive success, and it really brought home that although we live in the countryside, it doesn’t mean that everyone knows what goes on on a farm.

I don’t think one person realised how much technology was involved on our unit.

Educating children seems to be a hot topic at the moment. Vicky and I also went to Driffield Show Ground to talk to 800 schoolchildren about pigs.

This was a fantastic day, organised by Driffield Agricultural Society.

They attracted more than 30 businesses involved in agriculture who talked and answered questions from children. The children just love to be around animals.

Seeing the machinery operating is something we take for granted, but it is such an important aspect and I strongly believe we should try and make sure people better understand where their food comes from.

We are all very busy in our day-to-day jobs, but this is one thing everyone should make time for.

These children are our consumers and we must all invest time in them.

It is short sighted to say it is not adding value to our business, as who knows what impact you have on the children and what effect that has on their future decisions.

So it has been a busy month on and off the farm and demand for pork seems to be growing with processors having to search for more product, which all helps to improve our price, and long may it continue.

Kate Morgan and family farm 1,700 sows indoors in East Yorkshire and 1,200 outdoor in North Yorkshire, taking all the progeny through to slaughter