Suffolk Show: Organisers target new generation as food and farming industry reports a recruitment shortage

Bill Baker, Suffolk Show director, is pictured in Drinkstone. Bill Baker, Suffolk Show director, is pictured in Drinkstone.

Saturday, April 12, 2014
9:00 AM

Organisers of Suffolk’s biggest county showcase are hoping to encourage a new generation of youngsters to develop a love and appreciation of food and farming at this year’s event.

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Set against a backdrop of a looming recruitment shortage within the industry, Suffolk Show 2014, which takes place on May 28 and 29, includes new ticketing discounts aimed at young people, and a range of free farm-related activities and themes aimed at helping them to discover more about the sector.

Accompanied youngsters aged 14 and under will be able to enter for free and young adults aged 15-18 for £5 when they purchase their tickets in advance.

The show is hosted by the Suffolk Agricultural Association, which is concerned about an ageing farming workforce and a predicted shortfall in recruitment to the farming industry over the next decade. It is keen to showcase the career opportunities available within the sector.

Bill Baker, show director, said: “Your children aged 14 and under can have a day out that will cost you absolutely nothing for them, and they will have fun discovering all about the place they live and all the food that is grown there.”

A major new feature is the Farm Discovery Zone which will take show-goers through every aspect of food production from the ground to the plate through a series of displays and interactive activities.

Suffolk Sport will showcase more than 20 sports, while the Careers Discovery Zone will offer the chance to explore further education and jobs opportunities.

Other family-friendly new additions include a Parrot Roadshow, featuring rescue birds, and a giant animatronic T-Rex.

Greene King Eat Street and the Adnams Food and Drink Experience will showcase the region’s rich array of food and drink, and the show’s strong agricultural roots are reflected in the 700 livestock and equine classes on display.

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