Future of agriculture discussed at OFC

The Oxford Farming Conference (OFC) is currently taking place on 6-8 January, with speakers including Secretary of State Owen Paterson, European Commissioner Dacian Cioloș and National Farmers’ Union (NFU) president Peter Kendall.

The conference will tackle issues regarding where opportunities lie in agriculture, how they can be funded and how farms should operate in the future.

Speaking before the event, OFC co-chairman Adrian Ivory said: "Driving the debate will be the OFC’s sixth piece of industry research, which investigates the structure, processes and relationships needed to establish a truly competitive UK agriculture sector beyond the next decade.

"The research report we’ve commissioned is likely to be controversial, because it highlights the need for changes in how farms are operated and funded, some of which will be unpalatable to those who prefer working within the status quo."

Meanwhile, UKIP MEP Roger Helmer and leader of the Green Party Natalie Bennett will debate the motion: "This house believes that green energy is not worth the carbon it takes to produce."

Irish Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney will also be speaking at the conference, after being involved in the recent CAP negotiations under Ireland’s EU presidency.

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