Visitors set to flock to Open Farm Sunday

Farms across the country are gearing up to welcome thousands of visitors through their gates as they showcase the best of British agriculture.

More than 400 farms are expected to play host to 250,000 people during this year’s Open Farm Sunday, which takes place on Sunday, 5 June.

Organised by charity Linking Environment And Farming (Leaf), the day aims to show the non-farming public how farmers grow crops for food, clothing, medicine and fuel.

See also: Tips for first-time Open Farm Sunday participants

It will also highlight the science and technology behind British agriculture.

Since its launch in 2006, Open Farm Sunday has seen more than 1.6 million people visit a farm and learn about the vital work farmers do.

Open Farm Sunday founder Ian Pigott was awarded an OBE in the 2016 New Year’s Honours.

In the past three years, more than 80% of visitors reported learning something new about farming, and one in five visitors had not visited a farm before.

Open Farm Sunday manager Annabel Shackleton said: “Open Farm Sunday is the industry’s annual open day – showcasing all types of farming.

“Historically, it has focused on the story of food production, but British farmers are responsible for so much more.

“Whether they are producing nutritious food, fuel, or crops for medicine, clothing and manufacturing, we want to reach out to all farmers to share their story.

Ms Shackleton added: “The day is a great opportunity to show the public why farming is so important and to help build trust and understanding in agriculture.

“Whether farmers choose to hold a simple farm walk or a much bigger event, Open Farm Sunday is their chance to explain to the public what farming is all about and why it matters.”

A series of Open Farm School Days will also run throughout June – providing schoolchildren with the opportunity to visit a farm to learn about how food is produced and where it comes from.

Leaf, which celebrates its 25th anniversary this year, has produced a series of videos to promote the day and help farmers who want to get involved about how to put on a safe, engaging and enjoyable event.

The machinery sponsor for this year’s event is John Deere, which has produced 35,000 information leaflets for visitors to take home, featuring some useful industry facts.

Details of participating farms can be found on the Open Farm Sunday website.

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