Farming in 2015 and beyond may require thinking and doing things differently. Under the theme “The step-change – rethinking arable traditions”, next year’s Sentry Farming Conference will do just that.
Dramatic falls in commodity prices, changes in farming policy and husbandry challenges are redefining agriculture, which is highlighting the need to at least consider a different approach.
For growers, record yields in 2014 briefly took the focus off the severe grassweed issue facing many, but as soil health comes under increasing scrutiny, mob grazing expert Tom Chapman and Canadian zonal tillage and cover crop expert Blake Vince will share their thoughts on the subject. Is the grazing of dense grass swards practical and viable consideration in an able rotation or is zero till with cover crops a better solution?
The Sentry Conference 2015
When? Wednesday 4 February
Where? The Rowley Mile Racecourse, Newmarket
How much? £85-115
There will also be an insight into increasing the nutritional value of what we eat. Improving, embedding or selecting plants and products with a greater or more effective concentration of specific nutrients or antioxidants could help us get more from the same resource.
Speaker Caroline Drummond has travelled the world investigating the concept of “health by stealth” and will share her experiences and outline the opportunities this may hold for farmers.
A retail view will be added by Ocado director of marketing and grocery retail Lawrence Hene, offering an insight into the changing attitudes of shoppers, what this means for his business and how it may affect UK farmers.
Somerset farmer and Glastonbury festival founder Michael Eavis epitomises someone who has been prepared to do things differently, as he demonstrated when he first held the Pilton pop festival in 1970.
Glastonbury is now arguably the most famous music festival in the world and Mr Eavis one of the most recognised farmers in the world. Beyond music and dairying, Mr Eavis has contributed as much as anyone in reconnecting agriculture with the wider world and will present the first Sentry lecture.