We are delighted to say that Rock and Roll Farming has teamed up with the Oxford Farming Conference (OFC) to produce a series of podcasts featuring the OFC’s Emerging Leaders. Will Evans of Rock and Roll Farming – a popular podcast focusing on the people who produce the food we eat - will interview some of the young people in agribusiness who have shown leadership in their field, sharing their stories and views on the industry. The series is sponsored by crop protection specialists BASF and the first podcast will air on Monday 4th June at 13.00. It will be available through the OFC website (www.ofc.org.uk).
Mr Evans, who has a mixed farming enterprise near Wrexham in Wales, has a passion for giving farmers and farming a voice. He started his podcast in 2017, won the British Farming Digital Innovator of the Year Award last year and was an Emerging Leader himself in 2018. He also blogs at fatherandfarmer.com. Mr Evans was invited to produce this new series for the Oxford Farming Conference to share the opinions of young people aged 30-45, who have attended the conference as part of its Emerging Leader programme, with a wider audience:
“UK farming is about many things - world famous landscapes, groundbreaking innovation and technology, incredible livestock that people have put their heart and soul into breeding over multiple generations, but mostly it's about people. The individuals and families that put their hearts and souls into their farming businesses every single day and produce some of the highest quality food in the world. And that's what I want to show off in my podcast. I want people to love this industry as much as I do.
”The people I've interviewed, you could pick them up, put them in any other industry, and within a week or two they'd have a firm grasp on it and be doing well because of their work ethic, drive , entrepreneurship, and communication skills and I think that's something we should be very proud of. When Oxford Farming Conference asked me to work with them on a series of podcasts, I jumped at the chance. The conference itself is so innovative and forward-thinking in its approach, and with so many interesting people from the agricultural industry involved who are pushing boundaries and taking things forward, it's the perfect fit for me, and I'm extremely proud to be associated with them.”
OFC’s Emerging Leaders, who have been selected as forward-thinking, progressive farmers, are individually sponsored by industry organisations to attend the conference. BASF sponsors the OFC’s Emerging Leader programme, supporting its evolution and involvement in initiatives, both at and beyond the conference, which promote leadership skills and provide a platform for up-and-coming individuals in the industry. The programme, which is now in its third year, includes fringe events and discussion groups with exposure to high-level influencers and policy-makers.
Rob Gladwin, Head of Technical Management at BASF, said:
“This is an exciting time in agri-business, both technologically and politically, and it is more important than ever for young people in the industry to speak up and speak out. It is perhaps even more important for these views to extend beyond the farmer audience, and Will and his approach with Rock and Roll Farming will be a perfectly pitched vehicle for this. We are delighted to be supporting such an interesting and proactive initiative.”
The Oxford Farming Conference takes place over two days every January and includes a programme of innovative, challenging and inspiring speakers, networking events in Oxford University’s historical colleges and fringe events held by leading industry organisations. Andrew Pitts, the OFC Director who is spearheading the Emerging Leader programme, said:
“The aim of the OFC is to inform, challenge and inspire, and the conference draws an eclectic mix of players in the industry, both as speakers and delegates, which makes it one of the most important events to attend for so many in agri-business. We are very pleased to be working with Will and Rock and Roll Farming to extend that reach throughout the year with the views from the OFC’s – and indeed the industry’s - Emerging Leaders in an alternative and accessible format.”
The Oxford Farming Conference Emerging Leader Podcast will launch on Monday 4th June 2018, followed by a monthly episode released on the first Monday of every month.