Burnout among farmers is an increasingly frequent topic of discussion in the Swiss agricultural press, although there have been no empirical studies on the phenomenon to date. In 2016, 4000 Swiss Farmers were invited to complete a questionnaire, the aim of which was to investigate the frequency and causes of burnout in the Swiss farming sector. The study shows that burnout affects around 12% of the surveyed farmers. Financial situation, region, number and type of task areas for which the individual is responsible, place of residence of the parental generation, as well as sex and age are the main farm and household characteristics investigated here as influencing factors. These factors never operate in isolation and should always be considered in context, since burnout is always caused by multiple factors. The study is the first to deliver data on the frequency of burnout in farming, and at the same time highlights the need for action – especially the need to recognise burnout at a sufficiently early stage.
Frequency of burnout in the swiss farming sector