Tuesday, 13 December 2011
The National Trust's MyFarm experiment extends to include conventional farm method
The farmland will form a key part of MyFarm project which enables members to make decisions on what happens on the farm.
The arable land at Cambridge Road Farm is next to the 1,200 acre Wimpole Home Farm which is at the centre of the MyFarm project in Cambridgeshire.
Owned by the Trust, Cambridge Road Farm has always been farmed conventionally by a tenant, who has now retired.
Its inclusion in the project means that participants will be able to get closer to both conventional and organic farming methods.
Richard Morris, Farm Manager at Wimpole, said: "This is an exciting development for the project as we can now explore the differences between organic and conventional farming methods rather than simply talking about them.
"With only four per cent of farmland in the UK farmed organically we felt it was important to demonstrate the different benefits and challenges presented by each method.
"We'll be asking the MyFarm members to make decisions on the conventionally farmed land in addition to the 1,200 acres of organic farmland at Wimpole.
"We hope to make the differences and reasoning for both farming methods clearer and easier to digest. Whatever scenario the MyFarmers are presented with, we will be relying on them to make sure their decisions lead to both farms being profitable businesses."
Paul Hammett, Senior Policy Advisor at the National Farmers Union, said: "The MyFarm community will now have a fantastic opportunity to run the farms in parallel and learn about the advantages and disadvantages of both farming methods. It will be really interesting to see how their views and attitudes change, if at all, over the coming months."
For more information and to sign up to join the MyFarm experiment visit www.my-farm.org.uk.