FARMING in France still holds an important position in the psyche of many people, both from a cultural perspective and an economic one.
French agricultural life still plays a role in many corners of the country, but despite this many farms are still left to drift into a state of disrepair if no one can be found to take over their running following the owner's retirement.
But the French government is keen to see farmland continue to be worked and is especially keen to see younger farmers, including those from the UK, take over the running of a farm.
The Société d'Aménagement Foncier et d'Etablissement Rural (SAFER) is backed by the agriculture ministry and provides advice and information on both buying a farm and the training available for those looking to commit themselves long term to a project.
SAFER provides a guiding hand, earning commission on the sale of a farm, but just a quick look over their website gives you an idea of the assistance they could offer.
For example, details of the different tax regimes applicable depending upon both your family status and type of farming project are outlined, as well as advice on health and pension provision.
Naturally buying a farm in France is not a decision you take lightly, but reading up as much as possible on the subject and calling on the services of professional bodies should get you off to a good start.