The Oxford Farming Conference


Wednesday 8th to Friday 10th January 2025

Oxford and Online

OFC25 will explore how current and future farming policies provide new opportunities for farmers; how we can adapt, with the help of science and new practices, to the changing natural world we farm in; and how change and adversity can produce inspiring innovators and leaders who can transform people, farming and food production.

Scroll down the page to view a programme teaser.



Tickets now on sale (early bird ends 31 August)

Welcome from the 2025 Chairman, Geoff Sansome

The Oxford Farming Conference (OFC) has always been, and always will be a highlight in the farming industry calendar bringing together people from all corners of the agricultural, rural and food sectors, generating ideas and positive solutions for the future.

It is just over 30 years since I first attended OFC, and it has been one of the highlights of my working year ever since. I have watched it evolve, as our farming industry has evolved during those times. I have listened intently to the political updates from numerous Ministers and Secretaries of State and revelled in the challenge and debate around those updates. I still marvel at the opportunity the conference presents to network with the leaders, shakers and movers in UK farming and how easy it is to have those conversations in the convivial and hallowed setting of Oxford.

As a young person, at my first conference I was inspired to speak out in a session on my own experiences of working in Eastern Europe. My contribution was listened to and valued and my own experience has been shared by so many young delegates who have done likewise. It gives me great pleasure to see how the OFC support for Scholars, for young leaders on the Inspire programme and for those attending through our bursaries has developed. This helps make the conference inclusive, diverse, challenging, and inspirational; all the values the OFC Directors uphold.

Some of the most inspirational moments from OFC invariably arise from speakers who have nothing to do with farming or agriculture! We can, as an industry, be quite insular at times. So, it is fascinating for me to look back at the innovators, Olympians or industry giants who have addressed the conference over the years and helped us get our own issues into perspective, providing insights into a different world away from farming, but insights we can learn from and apply to our own situations.

The first Oxford Farming Conference was in 1936. That was the same year that my grandfather moved farms at the height of the agricultural depression. He hired a train, put his family of six on it with livestock and chattels and moved from West Wales to the more productive lands of Worcestershire, taking on a tenancy, which in common with most tenancies at that time was more or less given away.  Since then, my farming family and the OFC journey has encompassed wartime, rationing, food from our own resources, EU accession, production booms, shifting subsidy interventions, environmental awakenings, EU exit, agricultural transition and the current challenges of climate, global conflict and food security in a growing world.

My own 40-year career has been part of that journey involving substantial technical, policy and personal change. But I have always believed that every change presents an opportunity and rather than resist change, we must embrace the inevitable and work with it.

UK farming now faces a complex array of changes. Political, financial, technical, climate and seasonal to name but a few. Our forbearers will have faced worse but many farmers, particularly given the seasonal challenges of this year, are finding themselves challenged more than they have been before.

But change creates opportunity, and opportunity nourishes innovators. Innovators lead and adopt new technologies and influence others to see new opportunities. And that is the basis for the theme I have chosen for OFC 2025, “Facing change, finding opportunity”.

Within this theme I wish to provide a conference that looks at how current and future farming policies provide new opportunities for farmers; how we can adapt, with the help of science and new practices, to the changing natural world we farm in; and how change and adversity can produce inspiring innovators and leaders who can transform people, farming and food production.

As ever, we will be in the wonderful and historical surroundings of Oxford University, with a nod to the wonderful traditions and history that stands for. But, building on the superb work of past OFC Chairs, we will fully embrace and celebrate the diverse world UK farming is becoming and how it needs to develop more, as befits a leading 21st century industry. 

OFC Programme Teaser


OFC25 will start from lunchtime on Wednesday, for those who wish to make the most of their ticket and experience in Oxford. A new session “Inspiring Innovators” will draw  together ideas to support the future of agriculture. Papers will be called for late-summer 2024 to select a programme of inspiring speakers.

The OFC and Fieldwork Book Club and a Farmers Weekly Question Time will also take place on Wednesday, hosted prior to the Chairman’s Welcome Reception.

THURSDAY 9TH JANUARY 2025 (MORNING): Policy: enabling opportunity

Agricultural policy is in transition, in a world requiring increased food production, with demanding environmental priorities. This creates challenges for governments and farmers,  yet also opportunities. This session will cover the major farming political update at domestic and international levels and showcase how farming businesses are responding to these changing drivers.

THURSDAY 9TH JANUARY 2025 (AFTERNOON): Adapting to a changing world

Seasonal extremes and climate change are testing our established farming systems. Yet technological advances and innovations are creating incredible new opportunities. This session will explore our changing natural world, how that impacts on land used for farming and how today’s science can help feed tomorrow’s world.

FRIDAY 10TH JANUARY 2025: Inspiration from change

Change and adversity can often provide the catalyst for inspirational and influential leadership to flourish. Farming produces fantastic food for increasingly health-conscious consumers. This session will showcase inspiring farmers and food businesses, and people who have seized new opportunities born out of adversity, opportunity, ambition or a simple passion for food.

2025 Partnership Programme

The Council are pleased to present a new Partnership Programme for 2025, offering a range of sponsorship packages to ensure each sponsor feels value for investment and a return for their brand. This includes a range of new options from the OFC app, to a podcast series, online streaming and core conference sessions, as outlined in our teaser above.

Download a copy of the programme below and for more information or to discuss opportunities to support OFC25 further, contact Clare Greener as Head of OFC Partnerships via

OFC Partnership Programme 2025



OFC25 will take place from 8th to 10th January 2025, in Oxford and Online.

A programme teaser and tickets are now available by visiting our dedicated conference section.