Speaker: Lawrence Woodward

Talk Title - Farming for Health: Turning Aspiration into Reality

Friday 18th October 2019

Talk of “health and harmony” in farming and food is everywhere, especially as the government discuss a new Agriculture Bill, but what does it mean? Health and resilience can be environmental, physical or mental, for both the species we farm and for ourselves.

Very few producers farm and grow for health as a priority output – even organic ones. Do we even know how to do it? We are not clear on how and why some farms and holdings ooze ‘health’ so much it smacks you in the face and others don’t – even when they seem to be doing the right things.

The organic movement has made very little progress in understanding how to make its health and ecology principles a practical reality. And now genome editing claims to be able to deliver all the things the organic movement has aspired to. 

Lawrence Woodward is part of a new initiative called Whole Health Agriculture which seeks to build on organic principles and practice to “make health infectious” and will draw on his extensive experience to propose a way forward.

About the speaker

Lawrence Woodward was a founder and Director of the Organic Research Centre – Elm Farm for 30 years. In 2001 he was awarded an O.B.E. for services to organic farming, having played a pivotal role in the strategic and practical development of the organic sector in the UK and internationally.
Positions he has held include Chairman of the British Organic Standards Committee, Chairman of the International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM), Member of the Soil Association Council and Management Committee, Member of United Kingdom Register of Organic Food Standards (UKROFS) Board and the English Organic Action Plan task force. He was the founding chairman of the Organic Milk Suppliers Co-op (OMSCo), Organic Arable, Organic Seed Producers Ltd and the Organic Resource Agency (ORA) and is a former trustee of the New Economics Foundation.
He is a director of  Beyond GM and Whole Health Agriculture and works with the IFOAM EU Group, the Gaia Foundation and ORC. He has been and remains deeply engaged in articulating the underlying holistic concepts of organic food and farming; and how they relate to food quality and health under today’s social, economic and environmental conditions. He has been a long standing supporter of the work of David Fleming and the concept of The Lean Economy.
About Supper & Conversation at Trill Farm

Supper & Conversation provides an opportunity to enjoy an inspiring talk followed by a convivial supper, sharing ideas and evolving positive ways forward. Speakers include writers, innovators, critics, political agitators and environmentalists, and aim to be informative, to stimulate thinking, to make us laugh and to amaze us. 

The suppers are inspired by the content of the talk and from the seasonal abundance of the farm. The Old Dairy Kitchen now will be selling alcohol at these events with a delicious range of natural wines and locally produced beers and ciders to pick from (not included in the price of the dinner ticket).