Queen of the Land Louise Crowley has highlighted how Instagram has allowed female dairy farmers like her to share their daily lives, and to overcome gender inequality.
Speaking to the Irish Examiner, Louise revealed the challenges she has encountered as a young female farmer.
Involved in dairy farming with her dad from the age of 14 , she attended Pallaskenry Agricultural College in her native Co Limerick.
“There was 107 of us,” Louise said “and I was the only female there, so you do get those scenarios where you walk in, and you are told ‘you are in the wrong place’, or ‘are you lost?
“They all changed their tune by the end of second year, but there are scenarios like that.
“You go into a mart or you go to places and you are referred to as the farmer’s daughter, or you are a farmerette, I hate that term, a farmer is a farmer regardless if they are a man or a woman.”
She said “things have changed” in the last two to three years.
She claims that it was Instagram, which “has really opened a lot of people’s eyes, that I suppose wouldn’t have been used to women in agriculture.”
“It’s an everyday thing, they can see it on their phone, I don’t think they really bat an eyelid, not in dairy farming anyway, because a lot of farmers you would ask now would say women are better with cows.
”We are better at milking cows, we are more patient, and there are studies that have proved this.”
Attitudes within agricultural contracting still need to change, said Louise.
“Dairy farming has improved an awful lot, but in terms of machinery work, people still think women don’t have a place in it,” Louise concluded.