Speakers at LEAF President’s Event call for greater diversity for more resilient farming
27 Nov 2014
Experts from across the food and farming sector call for greater diversity in crops, livestock, biodiversity, our markets and diets in order to deliver a more resilient agriculture.
Speakers at LEAF’s annual President’s Event on the 4th November – "Defining Resilience and Diversity in Agriculture" highlighted the need for more diverse and integrated agricultural systems as global demand to feed a growing and richer population increases faster than supply.
Dr Gordon Jamieson - Knowledge Exchange and Commercialisation Director, John Innes Centre, focused on the increasing global dependence on wheat, and the challenges which lie ahead due to growing demand and changing weather. He highlighted the importance of diversifying the varieties of wheat grown and proposed we evaluate both risk and reward when it comes to the use of technology.
Within the livestock sector, Dr Grant Walling, Director of Science and Technology, JSR Ltd, discussed the changing demands in livestock breeding to ensure prolific dam-lines, robust sire-lines, good health and consistent quality.
Other speakers, included Kantar Worldpanel's Fraser McKevitt, Head of Retail and Consumer Insight, who covered market diversity and wider consumer trends, LEAF Demonstration Farmers, Patrick Barker – EJ Barker & Sons and Andrew Francis – Senior Farms Manager of the Elveden Estate, explained the role of Integrated Farm Management and Caroline Drummond, LEAF's Chief Executive, highlighted the need for greater diversity in diets and farming systems in order to feed a growing population while managing natural resources.