Online dairy business and policy conference to address future farming issues

Dairy farmers will get to hear about future farming policy and quiz Government Ministers and experts in a free series of webinars organised by the Royal Association of British Dairy Farmers (RABDF).

The Business and Policy Conference, sponsored by Barclays and ForFarmers, will again take the form of three bite-sized webinars taking place on 30 November, 1 December and 2 December.

The hour-long webinars hosted on Zoom will kick off at 10.30 am, allowing farmers to complete the morning milking. Listeners can also put forward questions live to each speaker consisting of government officials, industry experts and farmers.

Farming Minister Victoria Prentis will lead the opening session on future policy, followed by a roundtable discussion on the future of farming.

The second webinar on 1 December will look at the importance of food labelling and includes speakers Christine Tacon, Chair or Red Tractor; Prof Chris Elliott of Queens University, Belfast and Caroline Drummond of the Trade and Agriculture Commission (TAC).

The final session on 2 December looks at the industry’s environmental challenges, including information on the Clean Air Strategy and developments around permitting regulations. Speakers include Kathryn Morley, Policy Advisor on Climate Change and Agriculture at Defra and Tom Judd, Environment and Business Senior Advisor at the Environment Agency.

Commenting on the conference, RABDF Managing Director Matt Knight said: “This year more than ever, it is crucial farmers and those within the industry keep abreast with what is coming down the line with regards to policy and business matters.

“UK Agriculture is in a transition phase with the removal of subsidies and a huge focus on emissions and the environment. The programme is centred around some of these major policy changes, so we hope it will offer some direction straight from the mouth of government to help direct what, where and when change is coming.”

“The series of webinars are designed for dairy farmers as well as those involved in the dairy industry to keep everyone abreast of the challenges and opportunities ahead,” he said.

Nick Major, ForFarmers Corporate Affairs Director, added: “As a company, we want to make sure our customers are here in the future and have profitable and thriving businesses. For that, it is vitally important to keep abreast with future policy, which is why we are supporting the Business and Policy Conference.”

Oliver McEntyre, National Agricultural Strategy Director at Barclays added: “We are proud to be supporting the Business and Policy Conference again. The virtual format will hopefully open it up so more farmers can tune in at a time when we are seeing some major transitions within the industry.”

The free webinars will take place at 10.30 am, with registration opening at 10am. The sessions can be viewed live and after the sessions have ended. Registration is required by going to www.rabdf.co.uk/business-policy-conference

RABDF Business and Policy Conference 2021 outline:
Webinar 1 – Future policy outlook for the sector, 30 November, 10.30 am

1. Victoria Prentis MP to give an update on Defra’s upcoming policy.

2. Dairy farmers Di Wastenage, Robert Craig, David Christensen and Karen Halton will hold a roundtable discussion on the future of farming.

Webinar 2 – Protecting our product, 1 December, 10.30 am

1. Christine Tacon, Chair, Red Tractor, will outline the importance of food labelling and its link with high animal welfare.

2. Prof Chris Elliott, Chair of Food Safety, Queens University Belfast, will discuss food fraud in dairy products.

3. Caroline Drummond, Board Member, Trade and Agriculture Commission, will give a focused update on the latest work of the TAC

Webinar 3 – Environmental issues facing the industry, 2 December, 10.30 am

1. Kathryn Morley, Policy Advisor on Climate Change and Agriculture, Defra, will outline how the Clean Air Strategy has evolved and how it is working alongside the latest permitting regulations.

2. Tom Judd, Environment and Business Senior Advisor, Environment Agency, will give an update on the latest developments surrounding permitting in the dairy industry

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