Largest UK organic on-farm event goes digital

15 June 2020

The UK’s biggest organic on-farm conference, OF&G National Organic Combinable Crops (NOCC), is taking place virtually this year, with a series of interactive seminars and online farm tours led by experts in UK food and farming. They are free to join and open to all.

‘V-NOCC’ is hosted by the largest certifier of UK organic land, OF&G (Organic Farmers & Growers), with the AHDB and Agricology supporting the digital programme with a series of webinars streaming live on 9 June, 7 July and 14 July.

OF&G’s business development manager, Steven Jacobs explains that the online event scheduled for the original conference date, 7 July, will see Farming Today’s Charlotte Smith leading a conversation with OF&G organic farmer, John Pawsey.

“John will be joined by no-till specialist, Clive Bailye, to talk about how they farm and where their approach is working and where it maybe doesn’t perform as well as they would like.

“Like all good business people, John and Clive have clearly defined strategies and they constantly observe how their farm activities impact the farm business, both from a financial and an environmental perspective. We want them to really get into the ups and downs of farming and to explore what lessons each might learn from the other.

“In the wider series, we’ll extend the debate around the economics and agronomics of farming. We want to look at what the threats are and what the opportunities may be following COVID-19, with Brexit and the climate crisis still very much on everyone’s minds,” adds Mr Jacobs.

The programme of webinars sees V-NOCC partners Agricology, the AHDB, NIAB and the Organic Research Centre (ORC) joining the sessions.

Sue Pritchard, CEO of the Food, Farming and Countryside Commission and Vicki Hird from environment coalition, Sustain, join OF&G chief executive, Roger Kerr and the director of research at the ORC, Dr Bruce Pearce to discuss system approaches to food production with the land sharing model.

The V-NOCC series will also feature John Pawsey in his role as chair of the NFU Organic Forum hosting a virtual organic farm walk.

“Farmers know they need to build resilience into their businesses, and now more so than ever,” notes Mr Jacobs. “To build circular economies and secure stable food supplies in the UK, we must face the climate crisis and take a whole food and farming system approach seriously.

“One of the things to come out of this pandemic is the range and accessibility of talks and conferences being put online. V-NOCC provides an excellent opportunity to show how organic, as a legally defined and certified whole system, offers resilience in terms of economics, agronomy and the environment.

“This will not be exclusive to our licensees or organic producers. We’re keen to welcome farmers and industry delegates from across food networks to join our online events,” concludes Mr Jacobs.

For the V-NOCC agenda and to register for webinars, visit https://ofgorganic.org/events/of-g-national-organic-combinable-crops-2020-nocc20.

 

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NOCC agenda

OF&G and AHDB webinar

Seeds and deeds: collective plant breeding for reduced input farming

· 9 June 2020, 9am-10.30am · To register, visit https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/2215183184627372558

· Charlotte Smith, Farming Today presenter

· Dr Ambrogio Costanzo, principal crops researcher at ORC

· Dr Phil Howell, head of cereals at NIAB

· Mark Lea, organic farmer at Green Acres Farm, Shropshire

NFU virtual organic farm walk

Challenges of net zero

· 23 June 2020, 1pm-3pm · To register, visit https://www.nfuonline.com/sectors/crops/crops-news/virtual-organic-farm-walk-challenges-of-net-zero/

· John Pawsey, organic farmer at Shimpling Park Farm, Suffolk

OF&G and AHDB webinar

Know your soils and know your sales: organic min-till and non-organic no-till

· 7 July 2020, 9am-10.30am · To register, visit https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/1166654811408057356

· Charlotte Smith, Farming Today presenter

· John Pawsey, min-till, organic grower and NFU Organic Forum chairman

· Clive Bailye, no-till specialist and founder of The Farming Forum and Direct Driller Magazine

OF&G and Agricology webinar

Land sharing and sparing: a conversation on the value of agroecological food production systems

· 14 July 2020, time TBC · To register, visit https://ofgorganic.org/events/of-g-national-organic-combinable-crops-2020-nocc20

· Charlotte Smith, Farming Today presenter

· Roger Kerr, chief executive at OF&G

· Sue Pritchard, chief executive at the Food, Farming and Countryside Commission

· Dr Bruce Pearce, director at the ORC

· Vicki Hird, campaign coordinator at Sustain

-ends-

Notes to editors

 

OF&G (Organic Farmers & Growers) is one of the largest control bodies in the UK, certifying over 50% of UK organic land and operating across Great Britain and Northern Ireland, including the Channel Islands and Isle of Man.

OF&G has more than 40 years’ experience in the organic sector and is the longest established Defra-approved organic control body.

http://ofgorganic.



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