Oxford Real Farming Conference 2024

Event Date : January 4, 2024 - January 5, 2024

Event Location : Oxford

Celebrating 15 years of bringing the food and farming movement together
4 – 5 January 2024 🌱In-person + worldwide livestream #ORFC24

ORC is involved in the following sessions:

Thursday, 4 January 2024 14:00 – 15:30 GMT Oxford Town Hall ASSEMBLY ROOM

Livestock in the Landscape: Optimal Carrying Capacity of Land for Livestock with Lindsay Whistance and chaired by Matt Smee

Livestock use in farming systems is a polarising topic, from the drive to net zero to the degradation of arable soils, the topic is much discussed and at times misunderstood. This discussion session will present ideas and approaches that look to reframe the case for livestock in the landscape, present approaches that drive farmer decision making related to optimal livestock carrying capacity on farms and moves away from reducing animals’ role in the landscape to producing emissions.

Thursday, 4 January 2024 14:00 – 15:30 GMT Museum of Oxford MUSEUM MAKERS SPACE

Workshop: UK Grain Lab. Chaired by Charlotte Bickler

An interactive workshop to imagine a new cereal seed system. Existing UK Legislation and corporate control of plant breeding and milling is preventing diversity and dynamism in our grain economies at every stage from the DNA of our seed right through to baking bread. We want to imagine a more diverse seed system that can quickly adapt to climate challenges and a move towards localising and humanising our grain based foods. From bread to biscuits, pasta to porridge, our ability to create and share seed is crucial. We would like to invite attendees of ORFC to join our session and take part in visualising a new grain economy, beginning with seeds. What should our breeding targets be? How can we generate more diversity? How should seeds be shared? We want to gather everyone’s visions to help us build a case to update our seed laws.

Friday, 5 January 2024 9:00 – 10:30 GMT Oxford Town Hall OLD LIBRARY

The Search for Common Ground: Reconciling Farming and Academic Research with Julia Cooper

While in the field, farmers pioneer and share innovative regenerative practices, research councils continue to pour millions of pounds a year into tech-heavy, top-down solutions to the challenges faced by agriculture. This session will bring together academic researchers, funders and pioneering farmers to discuss how we can work better together. Through their own experiences of successful participatory research, panellists will explore differences in expectations, timescales and language which pose challenges to collaboration, and discuss what can be done to overcome these. They will then discuss what action is needed for the wider research agenda to recognise and support farmer-led innovation.


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