Talks by regenerative agriculture specialists Niels Corfield and Ben Taylor-Davies plus the latest advice on funding opportunities are on offer as the Marches Real Food and Farming Conference confirms its programme.
The conference takes place at Partridge Farm, Linley Estate, Bishop’s Castle, Shropshire on September 15 and 16.
It aims to give farmers and growers from across the region the chance to get the latest updates from national and regional experts and scientists on creating a regenerative and resilient food industry in The Marches.
One of the leading experts is Niels Corfield who has been specialising in regenerative food systems for more than 15 years. He focuses on agroecological systems that are low maintenance and productive advising on soil health, planned grazing and whole farm planning.
He will present The Weather-Proof Farm session on the first day of the conference followed by a soil and pasture monitoring workshop.
Making Regenerative Agriculture Pay is also on the agenda for a panel debate led by Clare Hill. She has experience of regenerative agriculture at policy and corporate level and is Director of Farming with Nature for New Foundation Farms. She is currently converting Planton Farm in Shropshire into a model regenerative farm.
She will lead the session looking at the profitability of regenerative approaches on Saturday morning with a panel of experts including former Nuffield scholar Ben Taylor-Davies.
He has established a reputation through his company Regen Ben as a straight talking farmer who advocates scientifically sound methods of producing crops that do not require huge amounts of artificial input.
The discussion panel also includes Shropshire specialists from Treflach Farm and Babbinswood Farm as well as the Bradford Estate and Downton Hall Estate.
Guidance on the latest funding opportunities will be on offer in a Friday workshop with representatives from DEFRA and Natural England providing the latest on Countryside Stewardship Agreements and the Sustainable Farming Incentive as well as localised resourcing.
Practical workshops over the two days will also provide hands-on experience of a wide range of skills, from measuring nutrient density to on-farm mapping and from composting to getting set up on Open Food Network.
The conference has been organised by The Shropshire Good Food Partnership and aims to examine all aspects of the food system.
SGFP founder Jenny Rouquette said the programme had something for everyone from all sectors of food production.
Further information is available at https://www.mrffc.uk/ or by contactinghello@shropshiregoodfood or via the social media accounts on Facebook @shropshiregoodfoodpartnership and Instagram @shropshiregoodfood.