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Innovation & Opportunity

These are watchwords we are going to be hearing and using a lot in the next 5-10 years, especially in the farming world. The reliance on subsidies is changing and land management and productivity in the future are to be 'for the public good'. Climate change and carbon neutrality are the leading influences in policy-making - whether driven by government, business or by individuals. And it starts right now! Okay, the newspaper columns may be talking of 2050 (as far as carbon neutral targets are concerned) but if plans are not in place in the next 10 years, it will be impossible to make that 2050 deadline. And ten years is a short space of time. Daunting? Exciting? Achievable? Of course..... Why not? It will be helped by a generation change as much as a culture or mindset change. We may not be able to picture it and probably we who are involved in farming now will not recognise 'our' agriculture, if in 10 or certainly 30 years' time, we are able to look back. Land will still produce food but perhaps it will do so much more intensively, alleviating the effects of climate change (the damage done by flood water and carbon emissions). It may also still be providing recreation space, and be adapted to produce business opportunities, new jobs and incomes - and it may simply continue to offer the general public the joy of beautiful, managed landscapes. All of us associated with the countryside have a wonderful, maybe unique, opportunity to influence, advance and also safeguard the future of our land.

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