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Tesco And Harper Adams University Launch Initiative For Future Farmers

By Robert McHugh
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Tesco And Harper Adams University Launch Initiative For Future Farmers

Tesco and Harper Adams University’s School of Sustainable Food and Farming (SSFF) have announced the launch of a new multi-year programme which will help up-and-coming British farmers develop their skills in sustainable agriculture.

The Future Farmer Programme will provide 75 young farmers with face-to-face and live online training on how to implement sustainable agriculture practices and protect biodiversity, Tesco added.

The nine-month course, which will run each year for the next three years, will also include events and mentoring sessions on business operations and personal development.

As part of the partnership with SSFF, Tesco will also fund research projects aimed at addressing some of the key sustainability challenges affecting agriculture.

Sustainable Agriculture

The first research project will look to bring together different sectors of Tesco’s agricultural supply base to understand how land can be managed in a way that is environmentally and economically sustainable for all parties involved in an agricultural rotation.

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Farmers under the age of 40 from across different agricultural sectors and at different stages of their development will be encouraged to apply for the programme ahead of its start date in October, the retailer noted.

Speaking at the launch of the programme at the Royal Welsh Show, Ashwin Prasad, Tesco’s chief product officer said, "British agriculture plays a crucial role in protecting and enhancing our natural environment and will be right at the heart of the UK’s efforts to achieve its net zero ambitions."

"It’s also had to overcome some incredibly tough challenges over the past two years, which is why we’re committed to supporting it, both now and in the future."

'Exciting But Challenging'

"We are entering a hugely exciting but challenging next chapter for UK Agriculture," added Simon Thelwell, director of the School of Sustainable Food and Farming at Harper Adams University.

"The transition to more sustainable food production systems is a significant change for many farmers, and so understanding these issues, identifying the opportunities they present, and being prepared to make change is the key focus of the course."

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