IFA farm family chair Alice Doyle has said that the contribution female farmers make to the agricultural sector is often overlooked.

Support must be delivered to women in agriculture to ensure all farmers are represented and to ensure that female farmers can claim their fair share for farming the land, according to Doyle.

The farm family chair’s comments come on International Women’s Day 2023.

“Despite the important role they play, women farmers contribution has traditionally been understated,” Doyle said.

“Today, on International Women’s Day I want to fully recognise their contribution both on the farm but also within their rural communities.”

Doyle made the point that increasing the number of women can have benefits for the farming sector as a whole and deliver benefits for diversification.

“It is so important for the future sustainability of farming and the wider agri-food sector that more women are empowered and supported to get involved in the sector,” she said.

“Rural women are an underutilised resource, and we need to introduce additional supports to encourage more women farmers to get involved."

More than just money needed

The family farm chair also stated that the supports women farmers need goes beyond only payments and schemes.

Improving the visibility female farmers have will be an important factor to ensuring that women are represented in the sector into the future, Doyle continued.

“There are a number of social and cultural barriers to women’s participation in agriculture that need to be addressed in order to effect change,” she said.

“We need to increase women’s visibility within the sector, to show younger women that there is a career for them in farming.”