The Oxford Farming Conference (OFC) has become ever more high-profile within the farming industry, but more importantly to wider audiences and stakeholders. The OFC's mission is to 'Inform, Challenge and Inspire'.
The OFC council is made up of ten voluntary directors, one being a treasurer. Each director serves a three year term, with the exception of the treasurer.
The annual report and accounts can be downloaded here.
The OFC is a charity with a remit to educate and transfer knowledge in the agricultural sector. As part of our charitable undertakings, the OFC sponsors young people to attend the conference, to travel overseas and to develop emerging leaders. The organisation also partners many organisations and companies in the sector on specific initiatives, including a Science & Innovation Award, an arable conference at the Cereals Event and a travel scholarship partnership with DLG, The German Agricultural Society.
Delegates now include many people from the wider food chain, retail, NGOs, scientific organisations, policy-making bodies and governments from around the world. In addition, media representatives from broadsheets, broadcasting and consumer media have also become a mainstay in recent years.
Over 600 delegates gather at the Oxford Farming Conference in early January at Oxford University both to hear the papers, but also to meet with like-minded people. It is a place where old friendships are renewed and new ones forged.
The first farming conference in Oxford took place in 1936. From the history outlined below, it is very apparent how pivotal the OFC has been in giving issues a voice and in sparking and airing debates. A tradition that is still very much at the heart of the OFC today.
In 1960, the conference moved venues again to the Town Hall in Oxford.
In 1968 the conference took another enforced rest due to Foot and Mouth disease ravaging UK agriculture which made it irresponsible to hold an event that gathered farmers from across the UK.
It was not until the 1970s that the truly international remit of OFC developed.