Unsafe practices on farms must be made socially unacceptable, Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture Martin Heydon has said.

Speaking at the BeSafe Farm Safety Conference in Teagasc, Ashtown, Dublin on Wednesday, Heydon said that he was "deeply concerned" about the Teagasc finding that almost three in every five farmers engage in unsafe farming practices.

"In order to create a safe culture, attitudes and behaviours need to change.

"If we are to succeed in bringing real change to the area of farm safety, we need to change the culture across farming and how we consider risk and hazards," he said.

Video series

At the conference, the Minister launched the Managing Farm Safety and Health video series. This series of videos aim to promote best practices around farming activities and in risk awareness.

Teagasc, in conjunction with FBD and the Farm Safety Partnership, are responsible for producing the series.

"The videos are short and concise. Each video, which takes a couple of minutes to view, contains a wealth of information on how each of us can make changes which not only protect ourselves and our loved ones, but also helps us to carry out our work more efficiently," he said.

The Minister urged all farmers to take the time to sit down and watch them as they will only be as effective as the number of times they are viewed by the people on the frontline.


This year, for the first time, funding of €2.25m was allocated in the Department of Agriculture to improve farm safety and wellness among the farming community and funding has been secured and increased to €2.5m in 2023.

Of this investment, over €1.2m was allocated for 18 farm machinery simulators for use in agricultural colleges. These are due to be installed within the next month.