A unique characteristic of most agricultural systems, in comparison to other economic sectors, is the ageing working population and the way business ownership is traditionally transferred within the family. A rapidly changing political and economic climate presents challenges not least in terms of business planning for future generations.
A limited understanding of the factors affecting succession decisions and limited scope for policy to intervene on this issue can compound the situation. Succession is a lengthy process, however, setting building blocks early on allows the business to stand in good stead going forward.
Through the monitor farm programme, the first hurdle to succession plan has been overcome simply by discussing the subject and encouraging communication.