Research commissioned by actnow, the project that is led by Cornwall Enterprise and spearheading the growth of broadband in the county, has shown how Cornish farmers are the best connected for their trade in the UK.
Some 44% of farmers in Cornwall now have broadband technology, while 73% use at least one computer in the business and 61% use the Internet. In addition 60% expect use of the Internet for their business to increase in the next 12 months:
Those farmers who use broadband find it brings a number of advantages –such as freeing up a phone line, enabling online banking, online purchasing and email communications with customers and suppliers at a time that suits them. Over 60% of broadband users think that it will increase opportunities for further diversification.
21% of farmers have their own websites, mostly farmers with diversified enterprises. Older farmers are less likely to use a computer or the internet, with around 20% of the current generation of farmers unlikely ever to use a computer.
Nigel Ashcroft, Project Director of actnow says ‘Not only is take up amongst farmers already the highest in the UK, there is also strong interest amongst those farmers that have not yet signed up to broadband,- so we can expect to see yet more farmers take advantage of the technology in the months ahead. 53 % of those still using a dial up connection say they are highly likely to switch to broadband.’
The research also shows that 61% farmers say they are saving time as a result of broadband and 40% are making cost savings.
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