In a survey commissioned by Agri Aware, Red C found that the vast majority of Irish people are supportive of Irish farmers.
The poll found that 94% of respondents believe that Irish Agriculture is important to the economy, with 75% saying it was ‘extremely important’.
This is a significant rise since 2007 (72%) and 2017 (88%) when these surveys were also conducted by Agri Aware.
The vast majority of respondents (87%) also believed that the countryside is an important part in attracting tourists to Ireland.
The survey showed a knowledge gap has emerging between the public and farming. Only 11% of those asked think Irish schoolchildren have a good understanding of farming with the number rising to just 16% among adults.
Spending time on farms and experiencing agriculture is viewed by almost half respondents as the best way to increase awareness, and learn more about farming.
Agriculture has a significant role to play in the environment and public sentiment has shifted slightly to reflect an increased awareness in recent years. 78% agree that farm investments are important to improve greenhouse gas emissions and water quality.
Alan Jagoe, Chairman of Agri Aware commented: “This is a survey we regularly commission to try get the pulse of the nation towards farming.
“There is obvious concern about a potential disconnect between the public and where their food comes from, but it is great to see the importance of agriculture is not lost on the Irish public.
“Agriculture has always played such a pivotal role in Ireland socially and economically, so it is important to us that continues to be recognised.
“Some public environmental concerns are inevitable but we are confident in the measures farmers are taking as we continue to produce the most sustainable animal products in the western world keeping top quality food on the plates of Irish consumers.”
Research was carried out by Red C.
Research was conducted using RED C’s online omnibus, the RED Line.
Quota controls are used to ensure a nationally representative sample of ROI adults aged 18+, with interlocking quotas to provide extra confidence in sample profile.
Data was weighted across gender, age, region and social class so as to ensure a nationally representative sample based on latest CSO projections.
1,003 respondents took part with fieldwork taking place from the 22nd – 28th October 2021.