The issue of succession
Image: Suzanne Christiansen
The coronation is done and King Charles III sits on his throne, looking a bit overwhelmed by the whole process, with his good Queen Camilla by his side. We all went to the local café to eat breakfast and watch it on the television there. I also purchased a fair amount of clotted cream to put on scones this weekend. The scones I made disappeared very quickly. (roddas.co.uk) Seems Rodda’s was ready for the onslaught, as per its packaging.
I do think Charles was thinking, oh, my mother would have understood how I am feeling completely. It is a weird feature of the job that you can only fully take over once your parent has died, but this is true often of dairy farming as well.
I think I would prefer the Netherlands option, where Queen Beatrix shifted the throne to her eldest son, Willem-Alexander, when she was 75 – 10 years ago. I suspect Charles will want to do the job for a few years at least before abdicating, but it wouldn’t be a bad idea to hand it over to the younger generation while everyone is still able enough to enjoy it.
The average age of the working dairy farmer is 59 in the UK, with nearly four in 10 UK farmers over the age of 65, according to BBC News. (www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-57149744). As dairy processors all rely on suppliers for the milk they use in products and to offer consumers, it affects the industry. Some dairy processors are also family businesses, and again, the issue of succession has to be considered there.
Farming and royalty both seem to be industries where it’s about family and succession, in a way that other professions are not. Charles and William could have a detailed and knowledgeable discussion with any farmer globally, about this very subject. It might be worth a Teams meeting or Zoom call being set up, perhaps?
- Suzanne Christiansen, editor, Dairy Industries International.
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