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You’d be hard pushed to find similarities between the professions of city stockbroker and a countryside farmer. At first sight, the cut-throat banking sector has little in common with the serene tranquillity of life on the farm.
However, the day-to-day job for a UK farmer has changed dramatically in recent years and the ability to buy and sell goods is now essential in the financially precarious world of agriculture. In fact some farmers would consider life in the city as a welcome break from juggling accounts and hands-on labour.
Adrian Ivory – who recently became the first person to win both Young Farmer and UK Farmer of the Year titles – invited The Hour onto Strathisla Farm to see what life in the meadows is really like.
“It’s a great life loving the business and job that you do,” said Adrian, who lives on the farm with his wife Katie and two children. “It’s very rewarding when things go right.
“You have to balance work and family very carefully and there are times when it’s difficult to do that. When it’s less busy you have to make the effort with the family.”
Like in any business, with 250 cows and bulls to look after Adrian must ensure that his product is in tip-top condition before he decides to take it to market. That includes washing and feeding the bulls, and even ensuring that they are content in their enclosures.
“The bull sales are very important to us. They show how I am progressing as a breeder and if what I am doing is either correct or wrong.
“You don’t want to take bulls to bull sales and bringing them back unsold. It can be quite gutting.”
The Farm even has its own celebrity bull, Colonel, who starred alongside Adrian in a recent advertisement campaign for Scottish Beef. He’s no prima-donna though, and his owner describes the 1.5 tonne cow as a ‘nice quiet fella’.
At the end of a hard day’s work, Adrian has time to reflect on his career choice – one which he wouldn’t change for the world.
“It is a hard job, certainly not easy and it takes a lot of time and effort to produce a quality product.
“But come the summer time it’s a great place to bring children up and its just a really nice friendly industry to be involved in.”