Join us from 2pm on the main stage to hear from top UK organisations on rural affairs.
Gill Lewis, Rural Payments Agency
- An update on BPS and rural development
David Neale, Agrii Agricultural Consultant
- Confidence in the future of UK agriculture?
- Each year, UK farming is faced with a myriad of different challenges. But in the face of adversity, what are the key opportunities for our industry to capture innovations in technology, crop breeding, end markets and soil science (to name but a few) to fully maximise margin per hectare in the future?
Ali Capper, NFU Horticultural and Potato Board Chairman
- An update on employing a part time agricultural workforce
Nuffield Scholar Presentation
After the afternoon presentation we welcome two Nuffield Scholars to the stage to discuss their recent papers.
Blackgrass: System BEN offers alternative solutions to resistance management
Over the past 40 years Ben has watched how modern farming has changed and evolved. Not only on his own farm, but after graduating from the university of Liverpool he became an agronomist and has been involved in the changing pace of modern day farming across the country. As an agronomist, his passion for the control of the ‘perfect’ weed blackgrass became his main focus and challenge.
This interest eventually lead to an application to do a Nuffield Scholarship where he made the most of 22 weeks world travel which took him from Mongolia to Brazil and the USA to Australia. It was during these travels that the thoughts of working with weeds, rather than against them, might offer alternative solutions to the problem.
Growing and nurturing talent in the agricultural industry
Chris runs a family farm based in Staunton, on the Gloucestershire/Worcestershire border. Predominately arable based, the farm runs a diverse cropping rotation established by direct drilling. However joint ventures with local farmers has allowed both cattle and sheep to be used within the rotation. Time spent working on a farm in France back in 1998 convinced him of the need to work with others and diversify income streams. To that end the farm also lets out offices, workshops and houses, runs a grain storage business, is committed to a HLS scheme and has a small solar energy system.
After graduating from Newcastle University, Chris worked in Ghana and Guinea-Bissau for a few years on agricultural projects, before starting to teach part time at Hartpury College and achieved a PGCE in adult education. He then left to run his own training company, including working for LANTRA as an instructor for the HSE on farm safety campaigns, but still enjoys teaching and is currently a sessional lecturer at the Royal Agricultural University.
Chris completed his Nuffield Scholarship in July 2016.