31 July 2019
Best in class

Irish organic farming student wins top prize

31 July 2019
HAWL bursaries

Bursaries offered for three-day homoeopathy courses



21 March 2019
In adversity, what are farmers doing to be more resilient?

Opportunities, barriers and constraints in organic techniques helping to improve the sustainability of conventional farming

Organic Techniques

Contract period: 1st February 2018 to 31st July 2018
Main funder:Defra
Contact staff at ORC: Laurence Smith
Other staff involved: Samantha Mullender, Stefano Orsini, Susanne Padel, Nic Lampkin

Project aims

The project will see how some of the well-proven farming techniques developed by the organic sector can provide the impetus for mainstream farmers to become more sustainable. Although organic farming accounts for a relatively small proportion of UK food production the sector has emerged as hugely innovative, employing novel solutions to reduce reliance on inputs while maintaining production but with limited resources. As well as considering what can be learnt from organic systems, the project will also assess opportunities, practicalities and barriers for translating best practice management techniques from organic to conventional farms including examining potential impacts on farm incomes, productivity and risks.

The research will review what is already adopted within conventional systems or is actively promoted through bespoke initiatives such as Agricology, Integrated Farm Management and LEAF Marque.

The work involves:

  • Identification of transferable practices
  • Engagement with stakeholders
  • In-depth research of a short list of practices
  • Production of a final report and farmer-facing factsheets on each practice

ORC's role

ORC leads the project and is responsible for the assessment of techniques and the publication of factsheets on Agricology.

Deliverables

The Final Project report for OF03101 (OF03111) Reviewing Opportunities, Barriers and Constraints for Organic Management Techniques to Improve Sustainability of Conventional Farming is now available on the Defra r and d site

Download the 15 Practice Abstracts produced in the project here

Project leader and partners

ORC is the project leader

Partners: