Calls for farmers to open their gates for Open Farm Sunday 2022

More farmers are being actively encouraged to open their gates and welcome members of the public during the industry’s annual open day.

Last year, more than 100 farms hosted a Linking Environment and Farming (Leaf) Open Farm Sunday (OFS) event under Covid-safe guidelines, and prior to the pandemic, more than 350 farms across Britain – covering all agricultural sectors – opened each year. 

This year’s event will take place on Sunday 12 June and the organisers are hopeful that many more farms will welcome visitors with the likelihood of Covid restrictions being significantly eased.

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OFS 2022 – the 16th event since the initiative was launched in 2006 – will focus on the many health benefits that can be found on a farm, ranging from healthy soils and the production of healthy food to the mental health benefits of being outdoors.

The organisers Leaf are calling on farmers to take part and organise their own event to demonstrate the industry’s commitment to sustainability, biodiversity, climate mitigation, nutritious food and a well-managed countryside. 

Annabel Shackleton, Leaf OFS manager, said every farmer can plan their own event, engage their local community, share their farming story, dispel misconceptions and give visitors a hugely positive, memorable experience.

She added: “Leaf Open Farm Sunday is the perfect way for visitors to really understand what best practice looks like and how farmers and the food sector are part of the solution, delivering for our health and the health of the planet – through the food we eat and the fresh air and countryside that we enjoy.”

Every farm has something of interest for visitors, whether it is talking about landscape and nature conservation, soil and water management, grass, crop health and protection, animal husbandry, energy efficiencies or diversification.

Free resources

A range of free resources are available from Leaf and OFS sponsors to support host farmers, including a host farmers’ handbook, activity crib sheets and template guides, for risk assessments and writing a press release, plus guidance on using an online ticketing service to manage visitor numbers.

In addition, a series of interactive online Zoom meetings for farmers wanting to find out more about hosting an event this June, are being held on the first Thursday of each month. Hosted by the team of experienced Leaf Open Farm Sunday ambassadors, topics cover:

  • 3 February Planning and marketing your OFS event
  • 3 March Managing visitor numbers, including ticketing
  • 7 April Promoting your event and making use of OFS free resources
  • 5 May Final words of wisdom

Farmers do not need to be members of Leaf to take part, but they do need to register their event at where they can also access an information pack and book to attend the Zoom meetings.

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