2014 Organic Producers' Conference
Intensive sustainability or sustainable intensification - which way forward for organic farming?
ORC’s annual Organic Producers’ Conference is the event where organic and other producers interested in ecological approaches to sustainable food production come together with researchers and advisers to share ideas on making agriculture perform better, for businesses and society.
With the recent launches of Defra’s CAP consultation and Sustainable Intensification Research Platform, as well as the government’s Agri-Tech Strategy, is there any place left for organic farming and similar agro-ecological approaches to sustainable food production?
Are the concept of sustainable intensification and the new strategies broad enough to not only focus on techno-fixes or can we find better ecological and knowledge-based solutions to meeting sustainability challenges?
Is producing ever more food really the priority, or are the climate change, environmental pollution, soil and water degradation and biodiversity loss problems now too great? Should our real focus be on intensifying the sustainability of our food systems, rather than intensifying production with questionable sustainability benefits?
We restructured our traditional conference format to enable participants to debate these questions and help find real, innovative solutions.
- Opening Plenary: Sustainable food systems - the challenges we face
- Closing Plenary: Making sustainability happen!
Sustainability round table
- Growing Oats – fulfilling the potential
- Future arable research priorities for organic growers
- Participatory plant breeding with diverse wheat populations
- Reducing the productivity gap in organic farming – balancing nutrients supply and demand
- Reducing the productivity gap in crop production - weed management – adapting Danish experience and expertise to the UK context
- Building local/regionally adapted seed systems
- Making our growing systems truly local
- Innovative local marketing - beyond posh nosh
- Home grown feed and forage – closing the system
- Maintaining productivity from grassland in the long-term
- Soft rush control in grassland
- Liverfluke control
- Organic beef and lamb markets: opportunities and bottlenecks
- Reducing antibiotic use for sustainable agriculture
- CAP reform – what’s in store?
- UK organic markets – trends and opportunities
- Community woodfuel : Integrating energy production into farming systems and communities
- Addressing the skills gap: Information/innovation opportunities
- Agroforestry: A question of scale – from forest gardens to landscape scale agroforestry