Regenerative agriculture is so much more than the physical regenerating of farming, but also allows for a regenerative mindset and allows the social impact of farming to be a very positive thing for now and future generations.
As someone who suffered terribly with mental health issues following my son’s accident, I feel I cannot just ignore this ever-growing farm issue. What I do know is what a rut feels like, what it feels like to have darkness descend for days/weeks, even months and the effect it has on your loved ones. I am also fortunate to have had the opportunity to regenerate my mind because of some of the farming choices I have made.
The simple facts are
83 farmers committed suicide in 2018!
That’s more than 1 devastated family every single week mourning for a loved one.
Mental health amongst the farming community is as serious as it gets.
As a career that most are born into and work with fathers being the key influencers, by the time the reigns are handed over the want to change, alter or diversify has all but dried up and now with the ever-growing costs of all input costs combined with yield plateaus means margins are ever squeezed, heaping pressure on many farmers financial situation which can often be the key cause of depression. This becomes the vicious circle as they want to change becomes the ‘risk’ of not servicing debt, so the continuous treadmill of debt servicing increasing combined with decreasing profitability and ever-increasing costs.
There are however so many more reasons for mental health issues, including relationship breakdown, not just partners, but family members too. Increasing industry attacks from various pressure groups through environmental concerns and the rise of vegan extremest’s and I am sure many other issues most of us are even unaware of.
Thankfully there are some quite brilliant charities that are beginning to challenge the traditional ignorance and acceptance of mental health issues by the industry as a whole and the previous taboo topic is now something that is now openly spoken about at many conferences and industry events.