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The future of farm management will be debated at a major agricultural conference in London next month. Organised by the Institute of Agricultural Management... Conference to debate way forward for modern farms

The future of farm management will be debated at a major agricultural conference in London next month.

Organised by the Institute of Agricultural Management (IAgrM), the National Farm Management Conference will see a host of top speakers take to the stage on Tuesday, 7 November at the QEII Centre, Westminster.

The conference title this year is ‘What is the farm for? Technology v Tradition: The Future of Agricultural & Environmental Management’. It will explore how the twin strategies of regenerative agriculture and the use of modern agri-tech can work together.

Food production

IAgrM national director Victoria Bywater said: “Are we going to have farms that produce lots of food, or farms that respond to the public goods for public services? What is a farm for? Is it there to produce food or public services?”

It is hoped the conference will help answer these key questions and look at how food production and environmental protection can work to solve two of the most critical issues facing humanity: climate change and biodiversity loss.

The packed one-day event comprises a line-up of speakers from across the industry. They include:

• Opening the conference, Professor Sir Charles Godfray, from Oxford University, will talk about how agriculture is both a problem and solution for climate change 

• Sam Hall, director of the Conservative Environment Network, will then discuss how farmers can stop and reverse biodiversity loss caused by intensive agriculture

• Will Jennings, the CEO of Rabobank in the UK will give a macroeconomic overview of the situation in farming and supply chain industries 

• Representatives from the food supply chain have also been invited to discuss how regenerative food production might affect procurement policies, with Joseph Keating, Co-op agriculture manager, leading this session. 

Also on the agenda regenerative farmers Paul Carrott, Will Oliver and Paul Cherry. Agronomists Ed Brown, head of agroecology at Hutchinsons, will bring a boots-on-the-ground perspective to discuss how they are making it regenerative agriculture work.

The conference will explore the role technology and data plays in agriculture – and the opportunities and challenges it presents – as well as the barriers preventing farmers the adoption of new technology.

IAgrM chairman Carl Atkin-House says: “We have a fantastic line-up of speakers throughout the day. For farmers and ancillary industries involved in agriculture and food, this conference is not to be missed.

“It will address one of the burning questions on everyone’s lips and look at how agriculture can maintain food production while delivering environmental policies set out by the government.”

For full details and to reserve your place, visit