Farm Business Updates returned to the East with a series of seven in-person events held across the region throughout January and early February.
The events saw scores of farmers, land managers, and rural professionals get together to hear the latest updates on the Agricultural Transition Plan, Countryside Stewardship, ELMs, and Catchment Sensitive Farming.
Susan Twining, CLA’s Chief Land Use Policy Adviser presented on current and future opportunities within the UK’s green investment markets, with areas such as Carbon trading, Biodiversity Net Gain, and Nutrient Neutrality credits discussed.
The information on alternative sources of income and government schemes was very well received throughout the series, as was the update provided by James Webster, Senior Agribusiness Analyst from the Andersons Centre who gave a comprehensive review of the economic outlook for rural industries; understandably to much questioning and lively debate from the floor given the widely reported challenges faced by the sector.
The NFU, FWAG and Natural England were among those to outline some of the key developments to Defra schemes coming from the new agricultural policy.
Water quality continues to be a pressing issue in the east, and presentations from Anglian Water, Essex and Suffolk Water, and Affinity Water also featured, along with representatives from the Environment Agency who outlined the importance of adhering to the Farming Rules for Water.
Attendees were also treated to some excellent and highly thought-provoking presentations from farming colleagues based throughout the region with Martin Lines, Matt Redman, Richard Heady, James Goodley, Will Maclennan, David Lord, and David White kindly giving up their time to introduce and outline their experiences of adopting regenerative farming practices and farming in harmony with the wildlife, biodiversity and natural resources of their land; a welcome addition to proceedings amidst some otherwise challenging but important content.
The CLA East team was pleased to continue working with its partner organisations to bring these events together and we hope CLA members will join us for next years’ Farm Business Update series.