Auto Trader Ltd
Farminguk
05 May 2016 | Online since 2003
Auto Trader Ltd


5 January 2014 14:38:05|

Farm experiment could lead to 'dramatic changes' in countryside


A bold experiment on a Hampshire farm could lead to better food and dramatic changes to the British countryside. There’ll be more wildlife, less pollution and greater protection for towns and villages against flooding.

Details of the new development will be outlined this week at Britain’s leading conference on sustainable agriculture, the Oxford Real Farming Conference. Taking the innovative step is farmer Tim May who runs a 1000-hectare, family-owned estate in north Hampshire.

Until this year the farm – Kingsclere Estates – was run as a conventional arable operation with heavy use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides. Across Britain this type of farming has led to pollution, wildlife loss, pesticide-contamination of food and rivers, and the degradation of soils.

Now Tim has had enough. He’s turning his back on chemical driven industrial agriculture and bringing back flower-rich pastures and grazing livestock. His aim is to restore the fertility of the soil and restore some of the wildlife that’s been lost. And to the surprise of many other farmers, he also plans to make more profit than he did on the intensive system.

“Some may see this as a step into the past,” says Tim. “But in fact it’s the very opposite. There’s no future to the sort of farming we do today, with large crop monocultures and heavy reliance on chemicals.

“We all know it isn’t working. We need to come up with something better, something more sustainable. And far from costing us money I believe it’ll be more profitable. As the soil becomes more fertile we’ll need fewer chemical inputs. So everyone gains – consumers, us the farmers, wildlife and the beauty of the countryside.”

Tim May has made his radical change of direction as conventional arable farming comes under increasing criticism. In one recent report – by the Dutch based Rabobank – farmers were urged to place less emphasis on total yield and look more towards “optimising” inputs. The over-use of chemical fertilizers and the wasteage of water were identified as two key areas for improvement.

Download





1 Comment


Name

Please enter your name


Email

Comment

Please enter your comment


Post Comment

Your comment submitted successfully.Please wait for admin approval.


Comments

World News

USA | 5 May 2016
US cattle futures slip after beef price drop

Cattle futures were slightly lower early Wednesday, pressured by a steep drop in the wholesale beef market reported Tuesday afternoon. Concerns about ample supplies and slack demand linger in the c...


China | 5 May 2016
China releases pork reserves as prices of pigs fly

Pork prices in China are at record levels even after Beijing pledged to decant some of its reserves on to the market this week in an attempt to tamp down the cost of the staple protein. When it com...


USA | 5 May 2016
Forget Farm to Fork, in Nashville, its Liquor to Livestock

Nelson's Green Brier Distillery is in the bourbon business -- and right now business is booming. "We're getting about 22 barrels a week out of what we're using here," said head distiller Andy Nelso...


Australia | 5 May 2016
Fonterra follows Murray Goulburn and cuts milk prices for Australian farmer suppliers

New Zealand dairy giant Fonterra will cut the price it pays its Australian farmer suppliers this season. The retrospective cut will see prices fall from $5.60 per kilogram of milk solids to $5. ...


South Africa | 5 May 2016
South African Poultry Association wants regulation of brined poultry products

The relaxation of regulation of brined poultry products was anti-poor and would adversely affect the poor, says the SA Poultry Association. CEO Kevin Lovell said was speaking at a press conference ...



Trending Now

Viewed
Discussed

Farms and Land for sale


Holiday Rentals search



Top stories you may have missed
Username
Password