National Federation of Young Farmers' Clubs

Fun, Learning, and Achievement

20 December 2019

Agriculture is on the brink of major change and a new event is set to challenge young farmers about their future in the industry.

The National Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs (NFYFC) will be hosting its AGRI Forum, sponsored by KUHN Farm Machinery and supported by Defra, on 5 February 2020 with the provocative title Fit in or Fade Out!

The event will be held at Daylesford in Gloucestershire – one of the most sustainable, organic farms in the UK and will involve leading industry figures discussing the challenges and opportunities for a farming and rural future. Delegates will also see how Daylesford’s organic system operates, alongside examples from Agricology on agroecological practices in all farming systems to adapt to a resilient, sustainable model of food production.

The event is open to YFC members and those from the industry interested in taking part in what promises to be an insightful and engaging debate. The event will comprise a Daylesford farm tour, five themed discussion groups with industry, farming and the Agricology project leads as well as a panel debate.

David Goodwin, NFYFC’s Agirculture and Rural Issues (AGRI) chairman and Warwickshire mixed farmer, said:

“Young farmers will be able to hear voices that may well have different perspectives from their own. Our aim is to stimulate conversation and understanding of the considerations for future farming and rural policy.

“We’re pleased to be partnering with Agricology at Daylesford Farm, industry figures, lobbying leads and entrepreneurs to host the AGRI Forum 2020. We’re also grateful for the ongoing support of KUHN and Defra to enable us to develop and deliver the event.”

The new format for the forum was piloted this year in Derbyshire when NFYFC AGRI held an event called Take Control of Your Future. Following on from its success the AGRI steering group decided to host future annual forums at key agricultural sites around the UK so more young farmers can be part of the discussions.

NFYFC’s AGRI steering group’s vice chairman George Baxter said:

“It’s a time of change in farming and we really need to make sure that we are continually contributing to the on-going policy conversations. Not with all the usual suspects but with those who have different views and will challenge and communicate their ideas.

“We have something for everyone on 5 February including a farm walk, themed discussion workshops and a debate on future food and farming.”

Anyone interested in attending the event can secure their place for £10 via Eventbrite. The event starts at 10.30am and concludes at 6pm with supper.

Programme

10.30 am –  Arrive/coffee

11-12.30 pm –  Welcome and Daylesford Farm visit

12.30 pm  –  Lunch

1.30 pm –  Introduction – NFYFC, KUHN, Daylesford and Agricology. 
Daylesford Market Garden/Horticulture tour

2.30 pm –  Group workshops

  1. How can agroecology enhance your farm? - Agricology’s Katie Bliss and Ian Wilkinson.
  2. Integrate and innovate - National Sheep Association's (NSA) CEO Phil Stocker and and Sarah Carr, Farm491's Innovation Specialist. The future of the sheep industry - automation, adoption of technology, changing skills and an alternative workforce.
  3. What will the future bring? - Compassion in World Farming’s Senior Policy Manager, James West.
  4. Sustainable farming - How Now Dairy - Oliver Lee - young dairy entrepreneur
  5. Good practice - Robin Levin, Agriculture Manager UK & Ireland, SAI Global UK Assurance.

3.45 pm           Discussion groups’ feedback

4:15 pm           Tea

4:30 pm           Video

4:45 pm           Panel debate

5:45 pm           Summary of discussion and thanks

6.00 pm           Supper


20 December 2019

Expand your world as you learn about new technologies and production practices and connect with other future agricultural leaders during an intensive 18-day fellowship in the United States.

Based at the University of Georgia, Athens, Georgia, and Washington, D.C. Fellows will:

  • Observe U.S. agricultural production practices first-hand with an emphasis on the livestock, dairy and grain industries. Fellows will visit a variety of producers including family-owned farms, organic operations and large-scale commercial operations.
  • Meet with U.S. regulatory officials and trade groups, including representatives of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and livestock and dairy producer associations.
  • Participate in cultural activities, including a homestay with a local family and social activities to build connections and explore rural life in the United States.
  • Visit U.S. national landmarks in Washington, D.C.
  • Develop leadership skills through programming with the University of Georgia’s J.W. Fanning Institute for Leadership Development.

The fellowship pays for the cost of airfare, ground transportation, visa fees, meals, all instruction and single-occupancy lodging.

Fellows will be selected from nominations of members between the ages of 18 and 26 by the National Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs (NFYFC), the Scottish Association of Young Farmers Clubs (SAYFC) or the Young Farmers’ Clubs of Ulster (YFCU).

Successful applications will demonstrate active membership and involvement in the NFYFC, SAYFC or YFCU; experience or interest in agricultural leadership and policy; significant agriculture-related work or study activities, particularly in the areas of livestock, dairy, and grain; commitment to a career in agriculture; openness to international experience and cross-cultural exchange; and interest in international agricultural issues and comparative production practices.

APPLICATION:

To be considered, applicants must be nominated by the NFYFC, SAYFC or YFCU. Applicants interested in nomination must complete the application found at international.uga.edu/agricultural-fellowship, including uploading two letters of recommendation, no later than February 9, 2020 at 11:59pm GMT.

Questions regarding the application process may be submitted to oieapp@uga.edu no later than 7 February 2020.


19 December 2019

Could you be the 2020 YFC NFU Council (observer status) and NFU Next Generation Forum YFC representative? YFC member Kate Wainwright is stepping down from the role and explains what’s involved.

What do you need to be able to do this role? 

Ideally this role is for a YFC member with a strong interest and understanding of agriculture, a will to contribute, learn and represent fellow YFC members as: an observer at NFU Council and participant for NFU Next Generation Forum meetings. You need to be someone who is happy to report back and share your experience with the YFC membership.

What will I be expected to do?

It’s an amazing role and gives you the unique opportunity to be witness to some of the high-end discussions that take place at the NFU Council meetings and NFU Next generation meetings and events.

The governing body of the NFU is NFU Council, an elected body of farmer members which meets quarterly. You will be required to attend these meetings as an ‘observer’ which means you do not have any voting rights.

You can learn more about the Council on the NFU website. 

Dates and venues:

The dates for the NFU Council meetings in 2020 are:

Monday/Tuesday – 27-28 January 2020

Monday/Tuesday – 27-28 April 2020

Monday/Tuesday – 22-23 June 2020

Monday/Tuesday – 12-13 October 2020

Monday/Tuesday – 25-26 January 2021

The NFU’s Next Generation Forum is a group of 11 farmers between the ages of 26-40. The group consists of seven appointed members representing each of the regions in England as well as four co-opted members which address skills and knowledge gaps in the forum. Two members of the NFU Cymru Next Generation Forum also have permanent representation on the forum.

Together, they bring a host of experience from farming as well as from professions such as teaching, land agency and agri-food supply chain management. 

Forum members are appointed on a two-year period with the current term running from May 2018 - 2020. The Forum offers the next generation’s perspective on current policy developments. Forum members meet regularly with MPs and senior representatives from both the government and industry to represent the voice of the next generation of farming.

Dates and venues for 2020 meetings will be confirmed early in January and previous work has offered members the following opportunities:

  • influencing policy development
  • hosting conferences to provide the next generation of farmers across the UK the opportunity to discuss key emerging policy issues
  • engagement with the European Council of Young Farmers (CEJA)
  • working towards an agri-food industry workforce skills and development strategy

Find out more about the work of the NFU Next Generation from the NFU website.

Is the role recompensed for travel?

Yes, NFYFC will pay for your travel.

Who do you share information with? 

You need to share a report with NFYFC and the AGRI regional and link representatives. NFYFC will also use your information to update YFC members through its communication channels. You can get involved in this by recording video messages about your experience, providing photos of you after the event or even updating your own social media about your experience too.

What did you gain from your experience in this role?

I can’t explain how much this role has been of interest and value to me. The contacts made at these meetings have been invaluable. I would recommend it to anyone that has the time to take up this opportunity!

Whilst you do need to dedicate time to this role, NFYFC understands how busy everyone is and that you may not always be able to attend every meeting. But – similar to YFC involvement – the more you attend the more you will gain from this amazing opportunity!

Having done the role for a few years, I feel the time is right to offer this opportunity to someone else who could benefit from it. The relationship between NFYFC and NFU and NFU Next Gen is a strong one and it would be great if someone can continue this for 2020.

If you are interested in applying for this role, please send a copy of your CV and reasons why you would be a great YFC NFU representative for 2020 to NFYFC AGRI after 2 January 2020. 



19 December 2019

The challenges of running their own business are multiplied at Christmas when Elwick YFC members Katie and Emma Sanderson have orders to complete ahead of the big day. Katie reveals more about their rural enterprise.

Name of business:

EK Handicrafts (ran by sisters Emma and Katie Sanderson)

When did you start the business?

We started in February 2017 after being inspired by making exhibition entries for YFC rally competitions.

Is it a full time business?

It’s part time. Emma works between jobs of dog grooming, waitressing and helping on the family farm, whilst I am a full time primary school teacher.

What do you sell?

Handmade sewn handicrafts for the home. These include cushions, oven gloves, tea towels, pot grabs, aprons, peg bags, tote bags, memo boards, draught excluders, door stops, Aga covers and we have also started making lampshades.

How do you market your products?

We mainly use Facebook as a way of promoting our business and products. We attend shows and craft events to get our name out there and sell our products.

Is Christmas a busy time of year for your business?

Yes, Christmas is the busiest time of the year for us. We attend so many events over the festive season selling our products and constantly playing catch up with orders. It's so rewarding to see our business being successful and the public wanting our products for presents.

What are your top selling products?

Lampshades have been crazy since we started them. Katie had to make 13 in one night for orders! We also sell a lot of aprons, cushions and oven gloves.

Where can people purchase your products?

We have a Facebook page that has all of our products on and people can contact us through there.

We also publicise the events we will be attending so that people can come along and see us.

Has your YFC helped your business?

YFC has helped us in a major way, as without it we probably wouldn't have decided to set the business up. Our club and county have held Christmas events and coffee mornings where we have also had a stand to sell our products. 


19 December 2019

We’re getting the Christmas festivities off to a jolly start with this fantastic competition from Muck Boots!

NFYFC has two pairs (a men’s and a women’s pair) of Muck Boots to give away to two lucky YFC members! 

Winners can choose a pair of boots from the full range of quality Muck Boots up to the value of £120.

The Muck Boots story began in 1999 as they set out to create a boot with the sole purpose of enabling those who live, work and play in the most challenging conditions to perform at their highest level, undeterred by the elements.

Muck Boots make premium products born from necessity, not luxury. Every boot in the line keeps you in your comfort zone with 100% waterproof quality. Waterproof, weatherproof, whatever-proof. Muck Boots put proof in every pair!

If you’re in need of a pair of quality, comfy boots, then put your best foot forward and enter NFYFC’s Christmas competition to be in with a chance to win!

HOW TO ENTER

On the competition posts on Facebook and Instagram, just leave a comment on the post stating where you will wear your Muck Boots if you were to win a pair! You'll need to respond by 11.59pm on 27 December 2019.  

T&Cs

  1. You must be a registered YFC member on the NFYFC database to win a pair of Muck Boots through this competition.
  2. There is one pair of women’s boots to win and one pair of men's boots, up to the value of £120. The winners can choose the style they prefer.
  3. There is no cash alternative.
  4. Closing date for entries is 11.59pm on 27 December 2019.
  5. Only one entry per person.
  6. Entrants must leave a comment on the Facebook or Instagram promotional post about where they would wear their Muck Boots.
  7. The best comments will be chosen to be the winners.
  8. The winners will be informed by a reply to their comment plus a Facebook message within 28 days of the closing date and will need to respond within 28 days or a new winner will be chosen.
  9. The winners’ names will be available on request and published on NFYFC’s social media channels, the website and in any shared media with Muck Boots.
  10. By participating in this prize draw, entrants confirm they have read, understood and agree to be bound by these terms and conditions.
  11. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook.



19 December 2019

NFYFC’s 88th Annual General Meeting will be held on Sunday 26 April 2020 in Warwickshire and is open to all YFC members to attend.

The meeting will take place at Stareton Hall, Stoneleigh Park from 10.30am.

Clubs and County Federations wishing to submit a motion for the agenda must send to the Chief Officer James Eckley by Thursday 13 February 2020.

The second draft agenda will then be published on Thursday 20 February to give clubs and County Federations chance to put forward any amendments to the motions. All amendments must be received by Thursday 19 March.

The final agenda is then circulated to clubs and County Federations by Friday 27 March 2020.

The AGM was held in Stoneleigh Park last year with a packed room of members involved in discussions and reviewing the previous year.

All clubs receive two voting cards for the meeting but there is no limit on how many YFC members attend.

NFYFC Chairman Katie Hall said: “We are really looking forward to the AGM as it’s a chance for us to review the year and gives clubs the opportunity to put forward motions that they are passionate about. We look forward to seeing as many YFC members as possible in Stoneleigh.”

Nominations for a new Chairman and Vice Chairmen of Council need to be submitted by 6 January 2020 with elections taking place at the February Council meeting. More information and nomination forms are here.


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