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Despite efforts to boost broadband rollout in rural areas, only a third of farmers are currently able to access speeds of more than 2Mb, a new report from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has found.

The findings were published in the recent Farm Practices Survey 2012 survey, which showed that there has been a significant rise in the number of rural customers able to access the internet, with 86 per cent now having a computer, compared to just 74 per cent in 2008.

In total, 98 per cent of farmers with computer access have an internet connection, but in the majority of cases customers are having to contend with speeds much slower than the national average.

In total, 60 per cent of farms had broadband speeds less than 2Mb, with just 32 per cent benefitting from a faster connection. Six per cent were still using a dial-up connection, while two per cent had no access to the internet whatsoever, the report found.

According to the rural respondents to the survey, faster broadband connections would be a good reason to sign up to and upgrade their broadband packages in the months and years ahead.

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