SIX young farmers from across the country were joined by senior Co-op staff and Minette Batters, NFU deputy president, for a round table discussion about their hopes and aspirations for the future of farming.

The variety of issues discussed included supply chain relationships, succession planning, farming as a career and how children can be better educated about where their food comes from.

The event at the Co-op's stand at the Great Yorkshire Show involved Co-op farming pioneers Joe Geraighty, from Yorkshire, Caroline Morris, Ross Towers, Richard Gardner, Paul Billington and Andy Venables.

They are all part of the Co-op’s national training course that aims to develop 60 of the agricultural industry’s future leaders over a two year period.

Ciara Gorst, Co-op head of agriculture, said: "It’s been fantastic to give our farming pioneers this platform to talk openly about the opportunities and challenges that lay ahead within the retail and agricultural industries – they are an essential part of our supply chain and it’s imperative we all work together."

Pioneer Andy Venables, from Cheshire, said: "The fact that the Co-op brought together its most senior stakeholders, along with the NFU, shows that as a retailer its taking its commitments to farmers seriously and helps us all, as a supply chain, to work together more closely and effectively for the good of the industry and consumers."