Led by the RBS and Duchy of Cornwall Estate, Duchy College is creating a 25-year environmental plan to develop the natural capital asset in its Home Farm and associated landscape.
Subject to securing funding, the Home Farm plan will develop nearly 50 hectares of natural habitat (including woodland, orchard, scrub, wildflower meadows and wildlife corridors) whilst maintaining a sustainable farm business; plant over 30,000 trees; sequester hundreds of tonnes of carbon each year (through soil and vegetation, rising to over 6,000 tonnes in 25 years); and protect 2 catchments (reduced flooding, better retention of water, and clean water).
Establishing, maintaining, and monitoring these natural capital interventions will become part of the curricula and extra curricula activities of College.
Farm Net Zero is an exciting new partnership between the Rural Business School, Farm Carbon Toolkit, Westcountry Rivers Trust, Soil Association, Innovative Farmers, Innovation for Agriculture and Just Farmers.
It is a £1.2million project funded by the National Lottery Community Fund for five years from January 2021. This new project builds on the work we have been doing through the Agri-Tech Cornwall Soil Carbon Project.
The UK government has set legislation to transition the country to net zero emissions by 2050, with the National Farmer’s Union setting the challenge of net zero emissions agriculture by 2040. Through Farm Net Zero, we will be monitoring 40 farms in East Cornwall with soil sampling and carbon footprinting undertaken each year. The aim is to encourage reductions in carbon emissions and share knowledge between farmers and the wider community.
For further information about the project, please email Alex Bebbington or Stephen Roderick.
Helping farmers break big questions into bitesized chunks, this project makes complicated conundrums more manageable.
2MF assists farmers tackle the challenges of modern life and business by unpacking complex issues, using resources such as short films and supporting material.
It works on the theory that regularly taking just two minutes out of your busy daily schedule can allow you to identify and begin addressing sensitive issues such as succession planning.
Spearheaded by Duchy College’s Rural Business School and Stephens Scown solicitors, the practical assistance the project will give farmers helps make them more technically efficient and should alleviate some of the mental health issues currently seen in the rural community.
The team behind the Farm Crap App have been busy working at incorporating all the feedback that we received from the industry. We are proud to have launched the new Farm Crap App Pro which is available now for Apple and Android Devices.
There are lots of new features on the app which make it easier to use and get the financial and environmental benefits that come from efficiently using manures and slurry.
New features include:
- the ability to map all the fields on your farm
- individual crop nutrient recommendations from RB209, to allow you to complete field nutrient plans
- the ability to take into account applications of compost, digestate and other products, including your own data from slurry or manure analysis
- the ability to take into account the application method (dribble bar, trailing shoe, injection) and account for the increased nutrient availability that comes with these bits of kit
- the ability to include applications of bagged fertiliser.
Where do I get it?
Best of all, the app is still free to use and download, and available on both Apple and Android devices. We have also developed a web version of the calculator, which is available here.
Click on the links below which will take you to the right place on the Google Play and Apple App store.
Farm Crap App pro for Android Devices (through the Google Play Store)
Farm Crap App pro for Apple Devices (through the Apple App store)
Agri-tech Cornwall is a £10m initiative to create a new sector for the Cornish economy, helping the United Kingdom become a world leader in agricultural technology, and sustainability..
We will support ambitious small and medium-sized Cornish companies develop innovations to improve efficiency, profitability and resilience in the agricultural sector – in field or moor, forest or shore.
Agricultural technologies can be any innovation that makes agriculture more efficient and productive, more resilient and secure, more profitable, and better able to enhance and protect the natural environment and those that farm it.
The project is funded by the European Regional Development Fund and is open to all small to medium-sized Cornish businesses.
This is a unique opportunity to develop and apply new technologies assisted by project partners, research grants and graduate placements.
The Soil Carbon Project is an innovative project that aims to help Cornish farmers manage soils in a more sustainable and profitable way. Interest in soils has risen dramatically in recent years, with the prospect of farmers receiving payments for environmental goods and services becoming ever more likely. The Soil Carbon Project is a collaboration between a farmer-led organisation, Duchy College and Rothamsted Research North Wyke with funding from Agri-tech Cornwall, and it aims to develop protocols for measuring and valuing soil health and carbon sequestration that are scientifically robust and practical.
While interest in the subject continues to increase, a great deal of uncertainty around measurement and management of soil health remains. This project will uncover what is happening underneath Cornish farm soils and develop practical solutions to valuing this hidden asset that puts Cornwall at the forefront of this emerging science.
The project will concentrate on three main strands in a bid to remove these uncertainties:
- Investigating a methodology that could be used to test for soil organic matter and carbon
- Learning more about the impact of farming management practices on soil health
- Financial modelling to understand how a potential government payment system for protecting or improving soil health and carbon sequestration might work
The project will involve a network of 30 Westcountry farms, reflecting a range of soil types and enterprises, as well as a collaboration with Rothamsted Research at North Wyke. One of the primary aims will be to work out a consistent set of metrics that can be used to identify and quantify changes in soil health and carbon levels, which could provide an evidence base to support future policy changes.
To find out more please contact Becky Willson on 01579372376 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
The SWARM Knowledge Hub is a web information service dedicated to south west farmers and growers.
The site helps to show that sustainable agriculture means more profit for the farming community.
It is largely divided into six key resource themes of soils, nutrients and manures, water, energy efficiency, renewable technologies and trees and wood.
- Learn how you can reduce the costs of farm inputs
- Increase profits by making better use of farm resources
- Help decide what energy saving investments to make on your farm
- Get unbiased reports on the latest resource management research
- Learn how other farmers are tackling resource management on their farms
- Get the latest news and information on funding and training
Information on a range of different topics is presented in a variety of ways including videos, decision making tools, factsheets and interactive features to allow the farming community to improve profitability and become more sustainable.