Farmers Weekly Podcast Episode 39: Opportunities and challenges in 2021

Gene-edited crops and livestock could soon be permitted on farms in England under plans contained in a government consultation.

The plan was unveiled by Defra secretary George Eustice at the Oxford Farming Conference – but Scottish rural cabinet secretary Fergus Ewing urges caution.

See also: How gene editing can help farmers target premium food markets

Red tape is hampering trade in agri-food products between the UK and EU – we examine the impact of the Brexit deal for farmers.

At the start of the New Year, 700 growers and livestock producers tell us what they hope 2021 holds for them – the opportunities and challenges.

Police and campaigners call for tougher action against hare-coursers.

We pay tribute to farm machinery pioneer Helmut Claas, who has died age 94.

And we celebrate success with the Farmers Weekly award winner who scooped an MBE in the New Year Honours list.

This episode is co-hosted by Farmers Weekly chief reporter Johann Tasker and Surrey farmer Hugh Broom, with Farmers Weekly executive editor Phil Clarke.


Podcast sponsors

Massey Ferguson

With more than 160 years of innovation and experience, Massey Ferguson is one of the world’s leading tractor brands and a force in the global harvesting business.

You can find out more about Massey Ferguson and the wider AGCO family, here.


Built on our strong heritage as a founder and pioneering company in the mineral fertiliser industry, Yara is a Norwegian based company which converts energy, natural minerals and nitrogen into the full range of crop nutrition products and a wide range of industrial applications.

Today, Yara retains its global position as a leading provider of nitrogen based mineral fertilisers and industrial products. The company is the global leader in ammonia, nitrates and speciality fertilisers.


AMAZONE is the specialist for fertiliser spreaders, seed drills, powered (rotary cultivators and rotary harrows) and non-powered soil cultivation (compact disc harrows, mulch cultivators and tine and disc cultivators), precision air seeders and crop protection sprayers.

The philosophy at AMAZONE is to provide a high-level of technical support to the product, before, during and after the purchase to ensure our customers gets the best out of their AMAZONE equipment for years to come.


Based at Thriplow near Cambridge, KWS UK has been providing growers with innovative new varieties to meet varied end-market needs for over 25 years. We develop a wide range of oilseed rape, maize, sugar beet and cereal varieties in conjunction with the KWS group.

We use a range of technologies to ensure improved crop performance consistency to benefit all; merchant, farmer, processor and ultimately the end-user customer. Higher yields, superior disease and pest resistance and improved performance in adverse conditions are all key criteria we seek to establish in our product portfolio.

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