Research projects

Agroforestry ELM Test 106 – Designing an Environmental Land Management system for UK agroforestry

Code : ELM T&T Ref 106

Contract Period : 01/12/2020 - 01/05/2023

Project Webpage :

Main Funder : Defra / UK Government

ORC Staff Contact : Dr Colin Tosh

Are you a farmer practicing or interested in agroforestry? Click here to receive project email updates or become more involved with this project. 

*NEW* Agroforestry ELM test project blog can be viewed here *NEW*

Project Leaders and Partners

  • Organic Research Centre (contacts: Will Simonson,; Colin Tosh,
  • The Woodland Trust (contact: Helen Chesshire,
  • Soil Association (contact: Ben Raskin,
  • Abacus Agriculture (contact: Ian Knight,

Project Aims

The project investigates two factors, payment incentives and advice and guidance, that are significant barriers to increased uptake of agroforestry by UK farmers. Project findings will inform design of the UK Governments Environmental Land Management scheme, which will reward farmers for the delivery of public goods.    

The Agroforestry ELM Test project is a collaboration between the Organic Research Centre, Woodland Trust, Soil Association, and Abacus Agriculture. The project runs between December 2020 and May 2023, steered by a farmer-led working group including representation from 6 monitor farms and 6 other key stakeholders. The Agroforestry ELM Test aims to gather evidence and opinion from a total network of 30 farms in six clusters representing the different types of agroforestry currently practiced in the UK (silvo-arable, lowland silvo-pasture, upland silvo-pasture, silvo-horticulture and wood pasture/grazed woodland). A series of 6 replicated regional stakeholder workshops will be hosted by each of the monitor farms by March 2022, and thereafter the wider farming community will be consulted in a series of interviews and an online survey by November 2022. After a final consultation with stakeholders, a report will be submitted to Defra summarising outcomes and lessons learned by May 2023.

Current Progress Highlights

Final Report

Previous Relevant Work

ORC Team involved with this project

Principal Researcher, Agroforesty
Senior Agroforestry Researcher