Facing up to Britain’s food security


Towards Greater Self Sufficiency will be the focus of the second Oxford Farming Conference Bitesize webinar held on Thursday 2 July at 12noon. 

The session, chaired by OFC Director and Associate Director Farming and Land Use at Soil Association, Liz Bowles, will examine how current events have prompted a refocus on food security. 

We are going to challenge listeners to consider how we balance future food security whilst tackling the climate and nature emergencies. Each speaker on this webinar will provide a different perspective into the challenges and opportunities that achieving this presents,” said Liz Bowles. 

“The OFC Bitesize webinars are providing an important opportunity for reflection. With the benefit of hindsight, we can examine how agriculture and our food system has changed since the theme was first debated in 1958 and, ultimately, gain a deeper understanding of where we go from here.” 

George Young, an agro-ecological farmer from Fobbing in South Essex, will be joining Liz as one of the panellists discussing the importance of micro-supply-chains and hyper-local food systems. 

“One of the positives to come out of the current pandemic is the realisation that we need to champion local food systems,” said Mr Young. 

“Through micro-supply-chains, we can shorten the degrees of separation between farmers and consumers and ultimately educate them on why food cultivated and reared locally in a certain way is better for them nutritionally and for the natural ecological systems.” 

Joining George on the panel will be Joanna Lewis, Strategy and Policy Director at Soil Association; Professor Tim Lang, author of Feeding Britain: Our Food Problems and How to Fix Them; and, Rebecca Speight CEO of RSPB. 

The 2021 OFC, hosted as a digital one-day conference on 7 January 2021, will celebrate its 75th anniversary since the first conference was held in 1936. The Towards Greater Self Sufficiency #OFCBitesize webinar will be held on Thursday 2 July FROM 12.00 - 13.00, and those wishing to register can do so here.