Women in Agriculture Stakeholders Group (WASG) has welcomed the new CAP regulations which place a strong focus on recognising the participation of women in farming.

WASG has said family farms will be strengthened by the 60% TAMS grant for women over 40 and the option of female-only discussion groups under the knowledge transfer (KT) scheme.

WASG chair Hannah Quinn-Mulligan said: “The measures will help to support women improve the viability of their own farms and provide a financial boost for any farm considering a farm partnership.”

She commented: “Various research, including the Department of Agriculture’s own SWOT analysis, has shown that women are often the innovators on family farms and encouraging and incentivising them to become more engaged can only strengthen the family farm as it faces considerable future challenges.”

Level 6 in agriculture

While women over 40 farming in their own right will have automatic access to the 60% TAMS grant, the partnership model will require that at least one farmer in the partnership has a minimum Level 6 in agriculture qualification.

“We continue to look forward to working with all stakeholders and the Department of Agriculture to ensure that the recognition of women in agriculture is drastically improved under the next CAP.

"It remains our priority to push the number of female farmers from 12% to at least 25% under the next CAP cycle. In addition, we need to start seeing women on more agricultural boards across the country,” Quinn-Mulligan concluded.