Dairy farmers will get the opportunity to hear about future farming policy and quiz Government Minsters and experts in a free series of webinars organised by the Royal Association of British Dairy Farmers (RABDF).
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The Business and Policy Conference, sponsored by Lely, Barclays and ForFarmers, traditionally takes the form of a one-day event, but will this year consist of three bite-sized webinars taking place on 2nd, 4th and 6th November.

The hour-long webinars hosted on Zoom will kick off at 10.30am allowing farmers to complete the morning milking. Listeners can also put forward questions live to each of the speakers consisting of government officials, industry experts and farmers.

Tim Mordan, Deputy Director at the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and Nicolas Saphir, Dairy Chair at AHDB will be kicking off the first session on Future Farming Policy.

The second session on 4 November will be focussing on how the UK dairy market will look post January on a domestic front and for exports. Speakers include MP Victoria Prentis- Under Secretary of State at DEFRA; Dr Judith Bryans, Chief Executive of Dairy UK; and Simon Tunnicliffe, Head of Field Operations at the Food Standards Agency.

The last session will include a panel debate with the previous NMR/RABDF Gold Cup winners looking at the issues, challenges, and opportunities for UK dairy producers. This will be chaired by Oliver McEntyre, Barclays National Agriculture Strategy Director, who will use his extensive knowledge of dairy farming coupled with banking knowledge to help the panel address the current topical issues facing UK dairy producers.

Commenting on the conference, RABDF Managing Director Matt Knight said: “This year more than ever it is important farmers and those within the industry keep abreast with what is coming down the line with regards to policy and business matters.

“Not only have we got Brexit to contend with, we also have the Agriculture Bill going through parliament, a possible reform when it comes to dairy contracts as well as trade uncertainties brought about because of COVID-19.

“The series of webinars is designed for dairy farmers as well as those involved in the dairy industry to keep everyone abreast of the challenges and opportunities ahead,” he said.

The free webinars will take place at 10.30am with registration opening at 10am. The sessions can be viewed live and after the sessions have ended. Registration is required by going to www.rabdf.co.uk/business-policy-conference

RABDF Business and Policy Conference 2020 outline:

Webinar 1: 2nd November, 10.30am

Title: Future of Dairy Farming

Introduction by Peter Alvis, RABDF Chairman

Speakers: Lesley Griffiths MS Minister for Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs, Welsh Government (Invited); Tim Mordan, DEFRA Deputy Director; Nicolas Saphir, Dairy Chair at AHDB

Webinar 2 – Wednesday 4th November, 10.30am

Trading and Food standards for the UK Dairy Market

Introduction by Mike King, RABDF Council Member and previous RABDF Chair

Speakers: Victoria Prentis MP – Under Secretary of State at DEFRA; Dr Judith Bryans, Chief Executive of Dairy UK; Simon Tunnicliffe, Head of Field Operations, Food Standards Agency

Webinar 3 – Friday 6th November, 10.30am

Issues, challenges and opportunities for today’s dairy producers

Introduction by Oliver McEntyre, Agriculture Director, Barclays Bank

Panel discussion: Mike King, Neil Baker, Bill Higgins and Philip Metcalfe

It’s been over a year since the COVID-19 pandemic caused milk prices to plummet…

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