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Speakers announced for session one of East of England Farming conference

Speakers announced for session one of East of England Farming conference

Clockwise from top left: Dr Douglas Parr. Ed Ford, Tim Brietmeyer, George Dunn.

Speakers for session one of the East of England farming conference have now been confirmed. Speaking on ‘Farming outside the EU – where are the opportunities?’ will be George Dunn, Tim Breitmeyer, Dr Douglas Parr & Ed Ford.

George Dunn - George Dunn studied Agricultural Economics at Nottingham and Reading Universities before working as an Economist at the Headquarters of the Ministry of Agriculture Fisheries and Food (MAFF) in Whitehall, London between 1989 and 1992. He then spent 4 years as Rural Economics Adviser to the Country Landowners Association (CLA) before joining the Tenant Farmers Association (TFA) as its Chief Executive in January 1997. 

He was a member of the National Trust’s Properties Committee from 2001 to 2004 and its Rural Enterprise Panel between 2004 and 2015. He continues as a National Trust Specialist Volunteer on land-use issues. He was a trustee of The Farming Community Network between 2008 and 2015 serving as chairman of the charity for five years between 2011 and 2015. He has represented the TFA on the Tenancy Reform Industry Group since its formation in November 2002. He was a member of the Future of Farming Review Group established by DEFRA between 2013 and 2014.

He is a member of the Welsh Government Strategic Framework Partnership Group for agriculture in Wales. He was made an Associate of the Royal Agricultural Societies in June 2006 and a Fellow in May 2011.

Dr Douglas Parr - Dr Douglas Parr is Chief Scientist and Policy Director at Greenpeace UK. He is currently working on a variety of issues especially climate change policy in the power, heat and transport sectors, and also on the implications of Brexit. He has previously worked on a number of issues including GM crops, chemicals policy, green refrigeration, marine conservation and bioenergy. He obtained a D.Phil in Atmospheric Chemistry from Oxford University in 1991.

Tim Brietmeyer - Tim returned to the family farming partnership at Bartlow Estate in Cambridgeshire in 1996 after 18 years in the Army. The business farms primarily cereals and sugar beet, some woodland, a thriving semi-commercial shoot, offices and cottage rentals, and a 100kw solar array on the grain store. In addition, the business contract farms for seven clients in the local area and has developed a Sugar Beet Harvesting and Haulage business. Tim also worked as a Farm Business consultant for Andersons for 16 years throughout East Anglia until 2013, specialising in Sugar Beet and contract farming arrangements. Tim was Chairman of the Bedfordshire & Cambridgeshire branch of the CLA from 2007 until 2009. He also served on the organisation’s Agriculture and Land Use Committee, holding the position of Chairman of this and the Environment Committee between 2010 and 2013, before taking on the role of CLA Vice President in November 2013. He was elected as CLA Deputy President in November 2015.

Ed Ford - Ed returned home to the farm in October 2009. Ed, along with his father and brother manages the 1500 acre family farm. The farm in south Essex is split over 2 units 25 miles apart, cropping both spring and winter combinable crops. In winter 2015, the farm took delivery of  a Cross Slot Zero Till drill from New Zealand and have adopted the system primarily over soil health concerns but also are hoping to see benefits of increased black-grass control , as well as fuel and labour savings. Ed is responsible for purchasing of all inputs on the farm, the agronomy, and has a special interest in soil biology as well as cover crops and how they can best be used in agriculture. Away from the farm Ed is an active member of Young Farmers. In the past he has been Chairman of Essex Federation and is currently chairman of Eastern Area Young Farmers as well as Vice Chairman of the National Federation. Ed is also a trustee of the charity Forage Aid and played a key role in the setting up of the charity following his involvement in suppling forage to the Somerset levels in February 2014. Edward was recognised for his efforts in Somerset when he was awarded the Farmers Guardian Farming Hero award in October 2014.  In January 2016, Ed completed the Challenge of Rural Leadership Course organised by the Worshipful Company of Farmers.

Members can still book tickets by either visiting the website or by using the online booking form

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