This year's programme and line up
A key event in the farming calendar the Norfolk farming Conference will take place on Wednesday 30 November 2022 at Norfolk Showground.
Over 300 farmers, producers and supporting industry professionals are expected to attend the event and the early booking of tickets is recommended.
We are delighted to announce that Dr Belinda Clarke, Director of Agri-TechE, is to chair the Conference.
This year’s programme and line-up includes:
0830 Registration open
0900-0915 Rob Alston, RNAA Chairman welcomes the Conference Chair Dr Belinda Clarke
0915-1045 Trade – challenges and opportunities
Daniel Zeichner – Shadow Minister for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.
Tom Bradshaw – Deputy President NFU
Barney Kay – Agriculture Director Pilgrim Foods
Q and A Session
1115-1245 Farming Carbon, ELMs and the Environment
Prof Paul Dolman and David Lyles – Biodiversity Audit in the North Norfolk AONB
Prof Sir Dieter Helm – Professor of Economic Policy University of Oxford (via video link)
Q and A Session
Dr Andy Wood – CEO Adnams Brewery Plc
Q and A Session
1330-1445 Water – flood mitigation and water resource use
General The Lord Dannatt – Chairman Norfolk Strategic Flooding Alliance
Dr Steve Moncaster – Technical Advisor Broadland Agricultural Water Abstractors Group
Daniel Johns – CEO Water Resources East
Q and A Session
1445-1545 Local farm case studies
Nick Padwick – regen ag – Ken Hill Estate
John Pawsey – organic farming and understanding the benefits of natural capital – Shimpling Park Farm
James Beamish – building soil health and organic matter – Holkham Farming Company
Q and A Session
1545-1600 A message from George Freeman MP Minister for Science, Research and Innovation
1600 Conference Close and Tea
Tickets for the Norfolk Farming Conference, including lunch and refreshments, are £72 per person and £42 for students. Tickets can be purchased here.
The conference is sponsored and organised by AF Group, Birketts, Brown&Co, Lovewell Blake, NatWest, Norfolk County Council and the Royal Norfolk Agricultural Association.
Meet the speakers
Tom farms in partnership with his wife, Emily, and his parents in North Essex. Alongside a small owned farm they run a larger contract farming business growing a range of combinable crops across 950 hectares in North East Essex. The home farm is based around arable production but has also diversified into equestrian and renewables. Tom has represented the NFU from Local Branch Chairman through to Chair of the National Combinable Crops Board.
His NFU office holder responsibilities include: animal health and welfare including bTB; climate change and net zero; water and air issues; clean air strategy; workforce supply and training; farm assurance and labelling; food safety; banking; animal ID and movements.
Barney joined Pilgrim’s UK as Managing Director, Agriculture in November 2021, taking over from Andrew Saunders, who left the industry following a distinguished 42-year career as one of the UK’s foremost champions of higher welfare pig farming.
Barney comes from Sainsbury’s where he was Head of Agriculture, overseeing agriculture, aquaculture and horticulture. Barney previously worked in a similar role for Tesco as well as spending time in operational roles at Pilgrim’s UK’s sister company Moy Park. Barney began his career as a farm manager and served as General Manager for the National Pig Association (NPA) from 2005-2011 and as a Regional Director for the NFU.
This is an incredibly important time for British Farming as we manage the UK’s transition to new trading relations while seeking to strengthen our position as producing the best quality and most sustainable products in the world. Pilgrim’s UK has established a unique approach to working with farmers which has helped establish its well-deserved reputation as the leading high welfare producer globally and it is going further and faster than anyone else in the industry in committing to net zero by 2030.
Professor Sir Dieter Helm
Sir Dieter Helm is Professor of Economic Policy at the University of Oxford and Fellow in Economics at New College, Oxford. From 2012 to 2020, he was Independent Chair of the Natural Capital Committee, providing advice to the government on the sustainable use of natural capital. In the New Year 2021 Honours List, Dieter was awarded a knighthood for services to the environment, energy and utilities policy.
He has written many books, most recently Net Zero (paperback edition, September 2021, William Collins), in which he addresses the action we all need to take to tackle the climate emergency. He is currently writing a new book on
The Sustainable Economy. His other books include: Green & Prosperous Land (2019, William Collins), Burn Out: The Endgame for Fossil Fuels (2017), The Carbon Crunch: Revised and Updated (2015) and Natural Capital: Valuing the Planet (2016), all published by Yale University Press.
Dr Andy Wood OBE DL
Andy Wood joined Adnams in the mid 1990’s with responsibility for developing its customer service and supply chain operations. He joined the Board in 2000 as Sales and Marketing Director becoming Managing Director in 2006 and Chief Executive in 2010. Andy has an MBA, a doctorate from Cranfield University and Honorary doctorates; in Business from Anglia Ruskin University, in Science from Cranfield University and Civil Law from the University of East Anglia. He was also awarded an OBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours 2013 and is HRH The Prince of Wales’ Ambassador for Responsible Business in the East of England. In 2018 Andy was awarded the FIRST Special Award for Environmental Responsibility as part of a House of Lords presentation on Responsible Capitalism.
From the summer of 2010 to April 2014 Andy was the founding Chairman of the New Anglia Local Enterprise Partnership and was instrumental in securing Central Government financial support for a variety of economic development initiatives across Suffolk and Norfolk. In particular the New Anglia LEP area was the only one to secure two City Deals for Ipswich and Norwich.
Andy is Non-Executive Chairman of SG Wealth Management (SGWM), a chartered financial planning and wealth management firm operating throughout East Anglia, Non-Executive Chairman of NORSE Group, and a Non-Executive Director of Folk Hotels. He is also a visiting Professor at the University of East Anglia. He has also co-authored a book on Lean and Green Business Systems. The book was awarded the Shingo prize for Operational Excellence in 2013.
Professor Paul Dolman is an ecologist at the University of East Anglia’s School of Environmental Sciences, who has a life-long passion for nature conservation. He collaborates with land managers, including farmers, wildlife trusts, FC and NE, to answer applied questions that can improve conservation outcomes.
In the UK, his research team have studied landscape-scale deer management, woodlark and nightjar populations, bat ecology, plant communities, and invertebrates across heathland, forestry and farmland. He developed the
‘Biodiversity Audit Approach’ – a novel regional analysis designed to give comprehensive information on management needs across the full complement of biodiversity and clear guidance for land managers on which agri-environment measure will best support nature recovery.
He has also worked with landscape historians to challenge the conservation understanding of ‘traditional’ agriculture, and in Central and South-eastern Asia led research to support threatened bird species, focusing on pastoralism
in desert and savannah regions, and low-intensity rainfed rice agriculture in floodplains being rapidly transformed by intensification.
Firstly, I am proud to be a local boy born and bred! With one half of the family traced back to the early 1500’s in Norfolk. We live at a little place called Muckleton, between Burnham Market and Stanhoe.
My working life has been spent running my own farming business and this included running other peoples’ farms and advisory work through Land Agents. I diversified my farming activities from pigs, cereals and sugar
beet to vegetable production and then in the late 70’s onwards to machinery sales and repair. I ran my own machinery / engineering business for over 40 years.
I have been involved in leisure business in several forms over the years. This includes being a past Chairman of Fakenham Racecourse – a position from which I have recently retired. I have experience in running support groups and have worked with several conservation charities. This has included some with educational interests and facilities. I also helped set up an educational charity for the purpose of running a Norfolk Preparatory School in the 90’s, which I am pleased to say continues today.
In recent times we have become involved in letting units for all manner of interests. These include boat restoration and repair, holiday cottages, furniture restoration and even pantomime production.
General The Lord Dannatt GCB CBE MC DL
Richard Dannatt was a soldier for forty years concluding his military career as Chief of the General Staff – the professional head of the British Army. Since retiring from active duty in 2009, he was Constable of the Tower of London until July 2016. In 2011 he became an independent member of the House of Lords and is a member of the Joint Committee on the National Security Strategy. He is a frequent commentator on defence and security issues in the media and columnist for The Daily Telegraph. He is passionate about welfare issues relating to both serving and veteran members of the Armed Forces. In 2007, he co-founded Help for Heroes with Bryn Parry and is closely involved with several other military charities.
Lord Dannatt has wide experience at Board level in the private, public and charitable sectors. Currently he is Chair of the National Emergencies Trust and of the Normandy Memorial Trust and on the International Advisory Board of the defence company Teledyne/FLIR. Previously he was Chair of the Royal Armouries and Cadence Consulting, and on the Board of Historic Royal Palaces and a Trustee of the Windsor Leadership Trust. Lord Dannatt divides his time between London and his family home in Norfolk where he runs the family arable farm. He chairs the Norfolk Strategic Flooding Alliance, is a past President of the Royal Norfolk Agricultural Association and is President of the Norfolk Churches Trust, YMCA Norfolk and Veterans Norfolk. He published his autobiography: “Leading from the Front” in 2010, and a second book: “Boots on the Ground – Britain and her Army since 1945” in October 2016. His wife, Philippa, was appointed Lord-Lieutenant of Norfolk in 2019. He is a Deputy Lieutenant of both Greater London and Norfolk.
Dr Steve Moncaster
Steve graduated with a PhD from the University of Birmingham in 1993, having studied the impact of farming on groundwater quality in Lincolnshire. He then moved into industry and worked as a consultant hydrogeologist, constructing and testing boreholes for public and private water supplies and working on groundwater protection and management projects, including for aquifer storage and recovery. After a period in the US, he returned to the UK and in 2004 started work for Anglian Water. Here, he led the team responsible for producing the company’s 25-year water resource management plan, the first Anglian Water long-term water recycling plan and the first Water Resource East (WRE) multi-sector regional water resource strategy. For his last two-years at Anglian Water, Steve was seconded into WRE as Technical Director, working with water companies, local authorities, the NFU and others to set WRE up as a not-for-profit company with a remit to deliver a regional water resource management plan for the East of England.
Steve has long been interested in integrated water resource management and in 2015 was awarded a grant from the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust to study best practice in the drought-vulnerable western US. The central message of his report, that balancing the competing need for water in water scarce catchments requires a more inclusive and modern approach to water resource management, underpins most of the work that Steve now does helping farmers, landowners and others manage their water-related interests.
Daniel Johns is Managing Director at Water Resources East, the independent, non-for-profit membership organisation tasked by government to create a regional water resources plan for Eastern England. He was previously a senior civil servant at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and spent four years at the Climate Change Committee leading their work on adaptation. He chairs the National Flood Forum board of trustees and is a Director of the Aldersgate Group.
Originally a farmer’s son from Hampshire, Nick studied at Sparsholt Agricultural College before moving to the Co-operative farms group. In 23 years Nick has managed several farming Estates, as well as the flagship Stoughton Estate in Leicestershire, where he and his wife developed the Farm to Fork project. In 2009 Nick won the prestigious Farmer’s Weekly Farm Manager of the year and Farmer of the Year awards. In 2010, he moved to the South Pickenham Estate where he managed 7,500 acres with a variety of farm systems. Since 2018, Nick has managed the Ken Hill Estate, which hosts the nationally-acclaimed Wild Ken Hill nature restoration and regenerative farming project, as well as leading the Peddar Farming business, which manages over 5,000 acres in West Norfolk.
John Pawsey is a fourth-generation farmer from Suffolk and is a Director of Shimpling Park Farms Limited. The farm is mixed with 650 hectares of arable land and 1,000 New Zealand Romney breeding ewes on Hanslope series chalky boulder clay. John also farms an additional 980 hectares for neighbouring farmers under farm management contracts. All the farms are managed organically with the first farm being converted to organic production in 1999. Crops grown on the farm feature an array of legumes and cereals as well as some speciality organic crops. Diversifications on the farm include a HLS Scheme, commercial and domestic rentals, specialist machinery sales and various renewable energy projects.
Born and brought up on a country estate in South Norfolk as the son of a gamekeeper it was the summer harvest job from the age of 14 that fuelled the passion for a career in agriculture. Having completing a 3yr National Diploma in Agriculture at Easton College which included a placement year on a mixed dairy / arable farm in Suffolk James then spent a year travelling with time spent working on various farms in Australia.
After returning James went to work for the Salle Park Estate where he ended up staying for 19 years concluding his time there as Crop Production Manager for the latter 8 years. It was during this time at Salle working alongside Poul Hovesen that a real interest in rotations, soil management and long-term farming systems was developed. During this time James also achieved both Basis and Facts qualifications and then went on to complete the advanced Basis modules in cereals and the sugar beet.
From 2013 he worked in tandem with the University of East Anglia to host the Defra funded Demonstration Test Catchment Project which was a 7-year project looking into mitigation of nutrient losses into water courses through
different farming systems. In January 2016 James took up the position of Farm Manager on the Holkham Estate and has since been appointed as a Director of Holkham Farming Company (HFC). HFC manage
the 3700 ha of in-hand farming operations for various members of the Coke family with an emphasis on long term farming systems which are sustainable for both food production and the environment, this includes developing an
8-year rotation which has gone back to incorporating livestock within an arable system as well as using every opportunity to improve soil conditions with tailored cultivations and the use of
organic manures and cover cropping.