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Oxford Real Farming Conference marks it's 11th year in 2020

Now in its 11th year, the Oxford Real Farming Conference (ORFC) will take place on 8-9 January 2020.

6 January 2020, at 11:10am

It’s been a seismic news year for all things agroecology, and this seems to have been reflected in interest in the conference. ORFC tickets sold out faster than ever, in early October.

For the second year running, the conference is running across multiple venues, to try and accommodate as many delegates as possible. Sessions will be taking place at the St Aldates Church and Conference Centre, the Oxford Town Hall, and the St Aldates Tavern.

This year the big discussions will be around:

  • Climate and how a food system based on agroecological or regenerative techniques can help stabilise our changing planet and feed its population.
  • The production and consumption of meat and dairy and whether recent reports that switching to a plant-based diet might be misleading (including new research from Oxford University into methane emissions).
  • The vast inequality of land ownership in the UK and how we can challenge and change this, with radical estate owners, campaigners and politicians.
  • Diversity in farming in the UK and what we can learn from the way other cultures approach and produce food.

The conference welcomes practising mud-on-the-boots farmers and growers, with scientists and economists, activists and lawyers, and everyone else with a serious interest in working towards a more sustainable food and agricultural system.

Our practical farming sessions are as present as ever, and include: the value of tree fodder in silvopasture systems, animal feeds, soil testing, benefits of pulses in crop rotation, farm benefits of woodland and agroforestry, pesticide reduction, antibiotic use reduction, agroecological weed management and organic transition away from the use of copper, plastic and other contentious inputs.

As always ORFC has attracted an incredible array of speakers. This year we are particularly pleased to welcome the following international speakers:

  • Leah Penniman, Farmer and Founder of Soul Fire Farm in New York;
  • Ben Hartman from Clay Bottom Farm in Indiana, author of The Lean Farm;
  • Alfredo Cunhal Sendim, Agricultural Scientist and Silvopasture farmer from Portugal; and
  • Nicolas Supiot, one of the most well-respected peasant bakers in France.

The ORFC would like to thank the following the following funders, sponsors and partner organisations, without whose support this event would not be possible: The Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, The A Team Foundation, Agricology, Chelsea Green Publishing, Compassion in World Farming, Cotswold Seeds, Farmerama Radio, Innovative Farmers,Land Justice Network, Lush, Organic Herb Trading, Riverford Organic Farmers, Sustain, The Land Workers’ Alliance, The Pasture-Fed Livestock Association, The Soil Association and Triodos Bank.

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