Tiny Fraction of Young Koreans Still Want to Work on Farms

  • By Hwang Ji-yoon

    July 30, 2022 08:22

    Nine out of 10 Korean university students feel farming is important but fewer than one percent of them actually want to work on a farm, a survey suggests.

    The Korea Rural Economic Institute polled 1,692 students last year, and 87.3 percent said agriculture is important. But 55.5 percent said they are not interested in farming and only 0.6 percent said they want to work on a farm after graduating.

    That would translate into just 3,000 out of around 500,000 university graduates every year, demonstrating why the sector is so heavily reliant on foreign workers.

    Only 9.7 percent said they want to work in an agriculture-related field.

    Most students did not even wish to live in the countryside, with 16.9 percent saying they "never" want to live on a farm, and 31.9 percent they are "unlikely" to. And 58.5 percent of the respondents who said they want to live on a farm want to do so only when they retire.

    The attitude is bad news for the government's plan to create more hospitable farming communities across the country and turn the industry into a future growth engine. 

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