Allerton project could provide options for greening on arable farms

The View from Northern Ireland: Taking productive land out of production goes against many farmers‘ interest in producing food. Many fear that greening measures contained within the new Common Agriculture Policy (CAP) proposals may result in them having to do just this.

While details of the greening proposals are still emerging they need not be a threat to farmers according to Phil Jarvis, Farm Manager for the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust’s Allerton Project farm at Loddington, Leicester.

The work being carried out at Loddington since 1992 has proven that there can be many options to integrate environmental benefit within arable farm businesses while still maintaining business profitability which remains a key focus for the farm.

The farm, which began with 333ha has now expanded through share farming agreements to cover over 800ha of mainly arable cropping, and aims to demonstrate practical solutions – from the research – to farmers, policy makers and the wider public.

While all are welcome to visit the Allerton project, this can be more difficult for people living in the north of Ireland but growers here will get a chance to hear Phil’s ideas for coping with Greening measures when he speaks at the joint College of Agriculture, Food and Rural Enterprise (CAFRE), UAS, Ulster Farmers Union Arable conference being held at Greenmount Campus CAFRE on 21 January 2014.

To register to attend, contact Technology Administration on 028 9442 6770. The event cost is £20. Cheques should be made payable to Ulster Arable Society. 4 Basis points and 3 Nroso points are available for attending this event.

Pictured: Robin Bolton, CAFRE, recently met with Phil Jarvis, farm manager for the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust’ s Allerton Project farm in Loddington,  Leicester to find out about their research work focusing on integrating environmental enhancement work into profitable commercial arable farms

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