Biological farming conference for midlands

Experts and pioneers from this country, as well as from the US and Canada, will address a biological farming conference.

The conference is set to take place in the Bridge House, Tullamore, Co. Offaly, on Monday and Tuesday, November 12 and 13.


The event will feature presentations from cereal growers and horticulture specialists such as Jim Cronin, on the value of soil biology and green manures and composting.

John Geraghty will open the discussion on whether building soil organic matter could become a ‘public good’.

A presentation will be delivered by Gary Zimmer, founder and chief visionary officer of Midwestern BioAg, who describes biological farming as a system of farming that focuses on the biology of the soil and not so much on the chemistry.

Also giving presentations will be: Joel Williams, an independent plant and soil health educator and a healthy soils advocate; and Dan Kitteridge of the Bionutrient Food Association.

Other speakers will include: Thomas Fouhy; Robbie Byrne; David Wallis; Jim Cronin; Clive Bright; Dave Beecher; and Fiona Brennan.

Mick Costello will cover biological farming techniques and beef production systems. John McHugh will speak about his journey to biological dairy farming.

Hosted by National Organic Skillnet, which is based in Drumshanbo, the event will start at 9:00am, with registration at 8:30am.

Biological farming

Day one is a national knowledge transfer day for tillage.

Sean McGloin, of National Organic Training Skillnet, said that farmers today are more becoming aware of soil damage through intensive farming and the high input cost has focused minds.

“I feel that biological farming approaches could go a long way to addressing their issues in reducing fertiliser and pesticides. A lot of this work started abroad and we thought it would be good to bring the advocates here,” he said.

Booking tickets

Tickets must be booked in advance.

  • A two-day ticket costs €130;
  • A two-day ticket with evening meal is priced at €160;
  • A two-day ticket with evening meal and accommodation with single supplement costs €219; and
  • A two-day ticket and evening meal and room for two people is on sale at €409.

Booking can be done at:

Fringe events will include: trade stands; biological soil analysis; and soil viewing under a microscope.