Tesco launches Future Farmer Foundation

20 Nov 2013

Today the Future Farmer Foundation has been launched by Tesco to support the next generation of British farmers. The Foundation has been established to help bright, talented, determined young people make their own start in the world of agriculture, whether that’s taking over the family farm, embarking on a new business venture, or entering the industry for the first time.

 

Today the Future Farmer Foundation has been launched by Tesco to support the next generation of British farmers.

The Foundation has been established to help bright, talented, determined young people make their own start in the world of agriculture, whether that’s taking over the family farm, embarking on a new business venture, or entering the industry for the first time.

In its first year, Tesco will offer a minimum of fifteen young people a bespoke package of leadership training, business planning advice, mentoring, supply chain experience and networking opportunities.

Funded by Tesco and free for participants, the Foundation is unique in its tailored, candidate-led approach.  Successful applicants will be able to choose a programme suited to their own aspirations and business needs, and it’s hoped the Foundation will also be able to offer training and support to dozens more young farmers during the application process itself.

Richard Marris, Commercial Director of Fresh Foods at Tesco said:

“We’re committed to the success of British agriculture, and we want the next generation of farmers, with all their energy, talent, and dedication, to be working with us for decades to come.  Whether it’s guidance on succession planning, advice on financial management, or providing access to a world-leading supply chain, we’ve developed the Future Farmer Foundation to be a strong base from which the farmers of tomorrow can launch themselves onto their chosen paths.”

Beth Bennett, aged 20, doesn’t come from a farming background, but now manages a 16,000 hen free range egg production unit.  Beth piloted the supply chain experience element of the Foundation, and found it invaluable:

“The scheme can help you develop yourself as a person to be able to achieve what you want in agriculture.  Looking into the supply chain, it’s been very beneficial to be able to go to the processing plant, and to go to Tesco’s headquarters to talk to the technical managers and buyers, to understand what the customer wants.”

Similarly, 21 year old Sophie Barnes, is new to agriculture, having moved to the countryside six years ago has built up her own flock of 150 ewes:

“I know I’m lacking when it comes to business skills – I can look after my sheep, but I’ve never had anyone teach me how to write a business plan.  The courses that the Foundation offers, specifically tailored to helping with an agricultural business plan, are something I can’t get anywhere else. It’s ideal.”

Dan Luff is 26 and farms a herd of beef cattle in partnership with his parents.  He’s positive about the training he has received:

“The scheme has helped me by adding new skills to my repertoire, in the way of negotiation skills, helping me with time management and leadership style.”

National Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs’ Acting CEO James Eckley said:

“As one of the largest rural youth organisations in England and Wales, NFYFC works to support young people living in rural areas. The Future Farmer Foundation compliments much of the work we do in helping to develop the leadership and business skills of rural young people and we would encourage our members to take up this fantastic opportunity to further their careers in agriculture.”

ENDS

Notes to editors:

  • The first stage of the application process opens on 20 November and closes on 31 December 2013.  Candidates can apply online via www.TescoFutureFarmerFoundation.com.
  • A selection of candidates will then be invited to an assessment day the Spring.
  • The Foundation is open to candidates aged 20 to 35 who live and work in the United Kingdom.
  • The scheme is part of Tesco's commitment to use its scale for good and create new opportunities for millions of young people around the world by inspiring, equipping and enabling them to succeed in the world of work.

For more information please contact the Tesco Press Office on
01992 644645

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