2019 Soil Farmer of the Year announced

Julian Gold has been named as the 2019 Soil Farmer of the Year.
Julian, who farms near Wantage, Oxfordshire, runs a 751 ha farm with medium silty clay loam soil. He grows a variety of arable crops on a controlled traffic system with sheep grazing cover crops and permanent pasture on-farm.
The overarching aim for the business is to increase carbon on the farm, through maximising photosynthesis of the growing crops, minimising compaction and adapting drilling to protect the soil. Julian is also involved with different on-farm research looking at understanding soil health metrics and the emissions from applying different levels and rates of inputs.
The inagural national Soil farmer of the Year competition aimed to find the best farmers and growers who were engaged with and passionate about managing their soils in a way that supports productive agriculture, biodiversity, reduces greenhouse gas emissions and builds soil organic matter and carbon.
Second place was awarded to Will Blackburn from Lymn, Cheshire.
Third place was awarded to Paul Davey from Market Rasen, Lincolnshire.
All three farmers will be hosting farm walks to share their experiences and advice on improving soil health. Dates and details can be found in our ‘events’ section of the website.

‘SmartAgriHubs’ explained in two minutes

Innovation for Agriculture will be co-leading the UK and Ireland Regional Cluster of the SmartAgriHubs project which will run from 2018-2022.

To find out more:


Innovation for Agriculture is excited to announce its sponsorship of the 2019 Farmers Weekly Young Farmer of the Year Award.

The event, which will take place on 3rdOctober, celebrates the very best of British farming by recognising and rewarding innovation, hard work and passion for agriculture.

Now in its fifteenth year, the event covers 19 categories, showcasing the best examples of farming across all sectors.

The Young Farmer of the Year winner will have demonstrated a significant impact on the farming business they are involved in and will display qualities that mark them out as a future leader and innovator.

IfA has continuously recognised the importance of young people in the farming industry, as the organisation continues to focus its work on innovation and the future of farming.

When explaining the important link with IfA and the Young Farmer of the year award, Andrew Lazenby CEO for IfA, said “If you want to move something forward in the world, the best advice I have ever been given, is to fill a room full of young people, set them the challenge, and let them get on with it. This has never been truer than it is today in British agriculture.”

The shortlist for all the award categories has now been announced. The final three for the Young Farmer of the Year award are:
•Sam Bailey
•Alex Saunders
•Jonathon Sloss

Table bookings for the event are open.


We Are Recruiting! Marketing, Communications and Digital Media Professionals Needed.

We are currently seeking 3 Marketing, Communications and Digital Media Professionals to join the Communications Department.

Roles and Tasks

  • Drive and develop the social media and marketing strategy and develop our tone of voice across our communications.
  • Produce and manage all social media promotion as well as exploring other opportunities to help increase engagement and followers.
  • Maintain and develop strong relationships with the media.
  • The creation of photographic assets for digital campaigns.
  • Creating social media video content for various online platforms.
  • Ensuring video content is in line with briefs and requirements outlined in conceptual stages.
  • Handing all data files, ensuring organisation is clear and manageable, and content is catalogued and secure.
  • Sourcing and licensing music to suit various projects in line with the brief.
  • Editing audio to best standard.
  • Involvement in the full marketing mix including; helping to organise events, website management, thought leadership, email marketing, copywriting and PR.

Personal Specification

  • Excellent grammatical and copywriting skills.
  • Excellent communication skills.
  • Ability to think creatively and generate new ideas.
  • Familiarity and operating skills with various equipment for photographic, video and audio recording.
  • Strong understanding of social media trends and uses.
  • Ability to prioritise and work to deadlines.
  • Ability to adapt and think on the spot, solving problems and overcoming barriers.
  • Ability to work in a professional environment and represent the company in a suitable manner.
  • Be available to travel and work remotely if/when required.
  • An understanding of the Agricultural Industry would be advantageous.


Positions Available:

Marketing, Communications and Digital Media Assistant x 2

Marketing, Communications and Digital Media Manager


Job type : Permanent

Hours : Full time, 35 hours per week.

Salary: Competitive

Holiday: 26 days holidays per annum

Please send applications to Emily Stillwell: emilys@rase.org.uk by 30th April 2019.

EURAKNOS: Datasystem to enable farmers easier access to information

The EURAKNOS project wants to reinforce the EU agricultural knowledge base by building a datasystem to enable farmers easier access to information

EURAKNOS is a H2020 EU Thematic Network that started in 2019 and aims to create the network that will strengthen the EU agricultural knowledge base by collecting existing knowledge and best practices from the other 29 existing Thematic Networks. Prof. Pieter Spanoghe from Ghent University as coordinator of the project explains: “These Thematic Networks are a specific type of EU H2020 multi-actor projects which collect existing knowledge and best practices on a given theme (smart farming, poultry, crop protection, fruit, etc.) to make it available in easily understandable formats for end users such as farmers, foresters, advisers and others.” Prof. Spanoghe continues: “EURAKNOS can be seen as the network of the networks that will analyze this knowledge to explore the feasibility of creating a modular database that makes this information more accessible to the farming community in a searchable and semi-standardized way.

More Information

We are recruiting : summer work

From 15th May until 1st August 2019 we are seeking individuals to attend agricultural shows on behalf of Innovation for Agriculture. The theme for this years’ show season is AMR (antimicrobial resistance), and better use of antibiotics across the agricultural sector. Tasks will include setting up show stand, as well as interacting with the attendees to promote AMR.

Hotel accommodation and expenses will be provided together with an attractive per diem.

Ideal for recently qualified and latter year vet students, or agricultural stu- dents.

If you are interested to find out more, please forward your CV together with a covering note to: nialo@i4agri.org by 29th March 2019.

RASE National Agricultural Student Speaker Of The Year Award

The Royal Agricultural Society of England is holding the final of the National Agricultural Student Speaker Of The Year Award 2019 at the Royal Agricultural University, Cirencester on 21st March 2019.

The finalists, from Harper Adams University, Royal Agricultural University and Newcastle University, will talk on topical issues facing UK agriculture.

The winner of these next generation agriculturalists will be chosen by a panel of judges and will receive the 2019 trophy, membership to the Sociaety and an all expenses paid trip to the 2020 Oxford farming Conference.

Students are invited to attend the event FREE.

More Information

Sensor Technology & Dairy Farming

The 4D4F (Data Driven Dairy Decisions for Farmers) H2020 project which is led by Innovation for Agriculture has released a video that shows the impact of the use of sensor technology and how it can improve dairy farming.

The video discusses the project including sensor technology benefits and impacts.  It covers two case studies:

  • Miracle Tech technology, the winner of the 4D4F Award, and brief interview with farmer George Coles on how the 4D4F project contributed to benefit his business.
  • Edwin Voermans explains how useful the ear tag sensors have been for managing the cows in the farm

View the video here