A third of young people living in rural communities fear they will have to leave their area to find a job, according to new research.
A study by insurance firm NFU Mutual suggested a shortage of suitable careers for school-leavers and people in their early 20s living in rural areas.
The survey of 1,500 people found that older people agreed there were fewer employment opportunities than when they started work.
Almost 200 people aged 18 to 24 were polled, with around a third saying they wanted to stay where they lived but believed they would have to move to a town or city to get a job.
Richard Percy, chairman of NFU Mutual, said: "This study clearly highlights the urgent challenge faced by farms and rural businesses in the UK, where the lack of financially viable opportunities for young people is potentially threatening the long-term viability of the entire sector.
"With the cost of living relatively high in the countryside, finding employment opportunities which pay sufficiently well to attract young people into the industry, especially if they are not already within a family business, can be extremely difficult."