Applicants sought for OFC Emerging Leaders programme

Farmers and other agricultural industry participants who have not previously attended the Oxford Farming Conference have one week left to apply for a prestigious leadership development programme.

The deadline for the Oxford Farming Conference Emerging Leaders programme is 31 August and organisers are urging anyone interested to apply soon or risk missing out.

Successful applicants will be invited to attend a special Emerging Leaders day in November, as well as meeting again at the two-day conference in early January.

See also: OFC 2019: Industry leaders clash over outlook for food and farming

The programme gives budding leaders the opportunity to meet key agri-food industry figures at a conference dinner and other fringe events.

Previous successful applicants have found that they could share ideas, debate issues and discuss opportunities both within the group and with senior farming figures.

Dairy farmer Colin Ferguson, who took part in the 2019 programme, said: “The Emerging Leaders was a great opportunity to come together with my peers from across the country and sectors, providing a whole industry perspective.

“The experience has provided long-term friendships that will endure for the future with the group chatting almost daily on WhatsApp.”


In order to take part applicants must meet the following criteria :

  • 30 to 45 years of age
  • actively involved in the food and farming sector
  • not attended the Oxford Farming Conference before
  • able to attend the conference from 7 to 9 January 2020
  • available to attend an Emerging Leaders day in November 2019 (date tbc)

Applicants will also be asked to confirm whether they have a sponsor to cover the cost of attending the conference, including accommodation and meals.

Programme organisers have called for any companies wishing to sponsor one or more of the Emerging Leaders to contact the OFC secretariat Archer Yates via

 Applying for a place

  • Complete the application form  before 31 August 2019
  • Applications will be reviewed by the panel in September
  • Successful applicants will be notified before the end of September.

The OFC-organised programme is supported by BASF and Scottish Enterprise Rural Leaders (SERL).

If you are a graduate of the Scottish Enterprise Rural Leadership Programme you can fill out an alternative form.

Successful SERL applicants will have their attendance at the conference, including accommodation and meals, supported by Scottish Enterprise.

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