Why Farmers Should Blog

I believe that all business people should be blogging, no matter what their industry is, and for various reasons.  Farming is a business but it is also a way of life that is passed down from generation to generation and therefore, this increases the reasons why some farmers should be blogging in my opinion.

  • Irish Foodie bloggers are doing a great job of supporting and showcasing Irish food but perhaps, farmers, as the producers of the food product, should be showcasing how Irish food is reared on our green, wholesome fields along with how much we care for our animals in giving them a healthy, happy life without the addition of growth hormones or any other artificial means to boost their performances.
  • Farmers who are selling their product directly to the consumer (raw milk, meat, cheese etc) whether from their farm or at farm/country markets should definitely be blogging as it will help to spread brand awareness and raise their profile. Blogging can also generate press interest and free press coverage in newspapers.
  • Irish farm bloggers can raise the profile of Irish food abroad and within our Emerald Isle.
  • It is becoming more apparent to me that so many people know very little how their food is produced. Much of the press seems to be negative and farming blogs will not only provide education about food production but also reassurance. A blog is the ideal way to show people about life on a farm and how their eggs/ meat / milk / cheese are produced using animal-friendly methods.
  • It is interesting to compare the different means of production in different countries, the different ways of doing things and learning which enterprises are most profitable in different countries. Yes, this can be read about in farming publications but it is so much more authentic and personal when one reads it in a blog and can engage with the writer.
  • With increases in mechanisation, farming has become increasingly isolated – both for farmers and for spouses. For many farmers enjoying the social life of organisations such as Macra, there isn’t much to replace this in Ireland once the farmer reaches 35.  Blogging provides a vehicle for getting to know other bloggers within your area of interest, form new friendships, hear of hobbies or meetings of interest to  you and enrich your life.
  • So many Irish people have grandparents or parents who were involved in farming and hence, many have a soft spot for the countryside. Farming blogs would provide so much interesting reading and education for those who have moved away from the countryside.  Some time ago, I mentioned on twitter that the cows were going dry that day and received many queries as to what that meant and why they stopped milking. It would be obvious to anyone in the farming sector but educational (and of interest) to others.
  • A farming blog will become a historical record for that farm. Imagine finding a box of letters and old photographs in the attic carefully collected by a grandparent? Wouldn’t it be wonderful? Just as the blog will be like a diary for any family members that have moved away or emigrated, it will be a historical record for future generations.
  • It would be good for tourism and the country’s image abroad.
  • It gives individual farmers a voice. Journalists are often looking for such stories and your story may be picked up by a journalist, resulting in free publicity for your business as well as providing a platform from which to speak out.
  • Feedback from consumers occurs via the comment section and farmers will hear what consumers want or expect, thereby they can modify their business accordingly.
  • A hosted blog (by blogger or wordpress) is free so no cost is involved. You can blog as often or as little as you like. With a self-hosted blog, you will have to pay the annual hosting charge but it isn’t expensive.
Do check out Donna’s blog post on the  American site Renegade Farmers on why she thinks farmers should blog 🙂 Inspired by this post but she is so much more passionate about it, do go over and have a read especially if you’re not convinced yet! Also Farmnwife has a good list of reasons too!

If you would like to blog but you’re not sure where to start, check out our Beginner Blogger posts over on our Write on Track website or get in touch if you have any queries.

Check out this post too which provides step by step instructions for starting a wordpress blog.

16 thoughts on “Why Farmers Should Blog

  1. Such a good post Lorna I agree totally with you I was talking about doing a blog for over a year before I started but am so glad I did start and I enjoy every minute of it . I think maybe Farmers might be slower to start a blog because one of the worries the farmers had here was the whole country would know your business and farmers are people who like to keep stuff to themselves but I do also know they love to know what everyone else is doing 🙂 I have come into so many new people since I started both in Ireland , England and America that I wouldn’t ever stop . I also think more Farmers should use Twitter .

    • Thanks Elaine, yes, I know what you mean about people knowing your business but I guess the joy of it is that you can censor your own blog, decide what you want and don’t want to say. it’s your blog so as long as you aren’t libelling anyone, it’s up to you what you write. I love blogging and if I had more time, I’d spend more time getting to know many more bloggers. There’s loads of farmers blogging in America and the UK for example, so I think Ireland should be working on catching up – for various reasons 🙂 Thanks a mill for your comment. Lorna

  2. Lorna,

    You are so right and perhaps it is us the farm women that can start the revolution here in Ireland 🙂 I’m only an new comer to the farming world but I’m learning and I work in rural development too. As for blogging my wee blog has almost 100,000 page views 🙂

    All things nice…

    • Well done, I do read your blog btw but I’m finding that I just can’t comment on blogspot at the moment. It’s happening to others too at times so I know it isn’t just me! But just so you know that there is an overall problem there, Lorna 🙂

  3. No worries Lorna, I don’t expect everyone to comment on my posts, they are fairly basis these days as I’m busy. I really enjoy your insights into farming though and am learning from you 🙂 I love the country living section in the journal and something like once a year or twice they have the magazine and I love it!! I too read the journal and it is amazing what you learn from it. Mairead Lavery should get you to write in it!! I also think alot of the farming community like Done Deal too, the amount of cattle and farm machinery on it is amazing.

    All things nice…

    • I thought it was working earlier and wrote a comment but then it just wouldn’t work, I was signed into google etc but then it wouldn’t even let me select another sign in – tis bizarre

    • And thank you for your lovely comments re the IFJ, yes, they are producing that magazine quarterly, it was free and I think they are going to charge for it now.

      • I thought Country Living was in the IFJ every week. I love the crosswords but most times I do not get it finished and when I look for the journal to finish the crossword my daughter in law has it gone. Very popular in our house

      • It is the new glossy magazine,, it is called Irish Country Magazine and is published quarterly. For the last year, they have been enclosed with the IFJ for free but from this month, they will be selling it. We attempt the crossword too 😉

  4. I like your blog, nice to hear from the farmers for once.
    For anyone who is on REPS do you know that the Heritage Council is opening the Traditional Farm Buildings grant for 2013 shortly either late August or early September
    Best wishes, James. Conservation Consultant

      • Hi Lorna, I think the grant will be max €20,000 and I don’t think it is open yet. You can sign up on the heritage council website to get info when it opens for applications.

  5. I like your point on your blog becoming a historical record. I’ve found that to be very much the case with my farm blog! It really is like a journal, and after a few years its interesting to look back through it and see the pictures, posts, ect. Great post Lorna!

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