ORFC Global 2021 Session Recordings Now Available!

ORFC Global 2021

Full Programme

This seven-day programme offers over 150 sessions that have been programmed with partners and farming communities from across six continents.  It includes a mix of talks, panel discussions, workshops and cultural events on everything from farm practice to climate justice to indigenous knowledge. Please take some time to explore!

Please note that although workshops are free to all registered delegates, separate, advance registration is required for all workshops, and spaces are limited. Workshop registration opened to all registered delegates from Tuesday, 29 December 2020 and was sent via email. Register early to avoid disappointment!

View a PDF of the full programme here

View a printable PDF programme here

Please note the times in the online programme below should display in your local time zone.

Farm Practice
Panel Discussion

Speakers

Luci Isaacson

George Young

Dr. Emily Fairfax

Chair

Chris Jones

Languages

English

19:00 - 20:00 GMT
Sunday, 10 January

Farming and Climate Change: How Beavers Can Help

Among much else climate change will affect rainfall. There will be more floods, more droughts and both will be more unpredictable. Civil engineers immediately think in terms of reservoirs and conduits and the rest - all very expensive and unnatural. But we should as far as possible let nature do the work for us. One of the best civil engineers in the world is the beaver with its supreme ability to manage water: damning streams and rivers when rainfall is high; creating natural reservoirs for release in times of drought; and providing day by day maintenance throughout the year. Absent from Britain for 400 years, farmers and conservationists are now bringing them back.

In this session Luci Isaacson will outline the impact of climate change on farming; Emily Fairfax will describe her work with beavers showing how their behaviour seems purpose designed to bring resilience to changing weather patterns for farming and wildlife; and George Young - an Ambassador for the Beaver Trust, will discuss how beavers can be introduced onto farms and play a key part in meeting future climate challenges.

Workshop
19:00 - 20:30 GMT
Sunday, 10 January

Women’s Empowerment in Agriculture: The Transformative Power of Non-hierarchical Spaces

ADVANCE REGISTRATION REQUIRED. LIMITED SPACES: 100 (Full)

In the United States, women are increasingly taking on decision-making roles in agriculture, and around the world, women’s empowerment in agriculture is a key tactic for supporting climate resilience and food security. American Farmland Trust and its partners around the United States have developed a variety of support structures for women in agriculture, including through facilitated peer-to-peer learning and networking. These programs create spaces for women in agriculture to share authentically about what they are experiencing in a white male-dominated field, support women in accessing resources, and help them realize their power to steward land successfully. But the COVID-19 pandemic shifted the way these services are offered, prompting practitioners to get creative with their use of online platforms.

During this session, leading practitioners will share their successes and lessons-learned making this shift in 2020, and discuss what it might mean for the future of support systems for women in agriculture in the United States.

Keynote

Speakers

Benki Piyãko

Languages

English, Português

20:00 - 21:00 GMT
Sunday, 10 January

Why Is the Current Agricultural System Leading to Disaster and How Do Indigenous Teachings Help Us Find a Better Way to Treat Agriculture?

The current agricultural system has forgotten the purpose of trees and plants and their benefits for all living beings on the planet, leading to an irreversible situation where temperatures are on the rise and the human race might not have a home in a few years. The signs are blatant; fires, drought, lack of water, higher extinction rates, etc. So what will we do to ensure our future?

Simple and efficient solutions exist and it is up to every farmer to choose the right techniques to deal with the climate crisis. Indigenous people give one example of how they play their part in protecting life on earth. They have always taken care of nature as if it were their own body and go with the motto that you reap what you sow. Benki has been practicing agroforestry for the past 30 years and shows us how this system constantly regenerates soil and generates biodiversity.

Keynote

Speakers

Severine Fleming

Chair

Adam Calo

Languages

English

20:00 - 21:00 GMT
Sunday, 10 January

A Decade of the US Beginning Farmer Movement in Reflection: A Conversation with Severine Fleming

Severine von Tscharner Fleming is an organic farmer and founder of Greenhorns - a radical, young farmers organisation in the US which produces the literary journal for working agarians, The New Farmers Almanac. Since 2013, Severine has also served as a founding board president of Agrarian Trust - a national organisation working in the framework of the commons to raise the issue of land succession.

In this session, Severine will deliver learnings from a decade of action with the young farmers movement, and an analysis of how inter-generational collaboration, and a commons-based approach to land tenure and stewardship may offer our brightest hope for food sovereignty and regional resilience. From her work with Greenhorns and the National Young Farmers Coalition in the US, Severine believes that the struggle for land access is the number one obstacle for young people entering agriculture, and particularly for organic farmers from a non-farming background.

Panel Discussion

Speakers

Marlen Sanchez

Jhorky Brito

Marta Perez Martinez

Chair

Blanca Ruiz

Languages

English, Español

21:00 - 22:00 GMT
Sunday, 10 January

The IALAs of Latin America and Agroecological Formation for Youth

The IALAs (Instituto Agroecológico Latinoaméricano, or Latin American Institute of Agroecology) are a process led by La Via Campesina to train young people from social movement organizations in agroecology. Agroecology is the farming model that rescues peasant and indigenous culture, ensures the construction of food sovereignty, and the only model that can cool the planet in a time of climate disaster.

In this talk, we will hear about the history of the constructions of the IALAs at the Latin American level and the methodology of formation. We will then hear specifically about the experience of IALA Ixim Ulew (Ixim Ulew meaning “land of corn” in Maya Quiche), the IALA for youth from the Mesoamerican region with central farm-campus in Santo Tomás, Chontales, Nicaragua.

Panel Discussion

Speakers

Guy Shrubsole

Elise Wach

Chair

Chris Smaje

Languages

English

12:00 - 13:00 GMT
Monday, 11 January

Delivering a Small Farm Future in Britain: Present Obstacles, Future Possibilities

In this session, three writers, researchers and activists discuss ways to build thriving, regenerative local farm economies across Britain in the present environmental and social crisis.

Chris Smaje draws on lessons from agricultural history and contemporary political ecology to show how bottom-up political activism might deliver smallholder-based land reform in Britain, briefly illustrating his analysis in relation to Wales.

Guy Shrubsole examines how farmland in England is concentrated in the hands of a few, and how it can be opened up to more people looking to grow food – from the late-19th-century countermovement that produced County Farms and allotments, to the Community Right to Buy in 21st-century Scotland. Guy will discuss possible reforms to inheritance tax breaks for agricultural land, the pros and cons of Land Value Tax, and how councils might be persuaded to transfer land assets to communities rather than flog them off to private developers.

Elise Wach will discuss the relationships between land rights and the realisation of agroecological food systems. Specifically, she will discuss how the advent of capitalism led to a shift from diverse and sufficient food systems to monograzing in the Scottish uplands. She'll also discuss the potentials and gaps of recent Scottish land reform in relation to breaking from capitalism and supporting agroecology, and what we can learn from it.

Farm Practice
Keynote

Speakers

Shi Yan

Chair

Languages

English

12:00 - 13:00 GMT
Monday, 11 January

China, COVID-19 and the growth of the CSA Network: How the Pandemic Has Changed Short Supply Chain Agriculture in China

This year more than any has shown how resilient agroecological farms are. Many farms in China's CSA network have performed very well during the pandemic, both economically as well as being responsive to the needs of the consumer who realised the essential necessity to eat good, healthy food to boost their immunity in the face of the "pandemic enemy”. The effect of this is that producer-consumer relationships have grown and changed in that the bond is now much closer.

Being able to eat organic, healthy food that has gone from "farm to table" in 24 hours has engendered a deep mutual gratitude in CSA members. The pandemic generated a fighting spirit on the side of both producers and consumers. This brought out the essence of community supported agriculture which is that the relationship between farmers and consumers is stable, mutually supportive, and collaborative.

Join Shi Yan, an organic pioneer and the founder of the first CSA in China. She now runs Shared Harvests, a CSA which now provides food for over a thousand families in Beijing.

Workshop

Chair

Brian Scanlon

Languages

English

12:00 - 13:30 GMT
Monday, 11 January

Nature Means Business

ADVANCE REGISTRATION REQUIRED. LIMITED SPACES: 120

Nature is a key stakeholder in any farm business, but how do you account for the assets it provides? Correct and supportive management of nature can actually improve the business bottom line. After significant research and analysis of over 80 farm businesses, Chris Clark and the Nature Friendly Farming Network (NFFN) team will lead you through this Maximum Sustainable Output (MSO) approach showing how nature is inextricably linked to your business and how these ’free assets’ can be maximised without detriment to the land and nature. New evidence will also be shared about ‘low to no management’ of nature scenarios and the possible consequences it may have on your business. Join Chris and NFFN at this interactive workshop on Nature Means Business to learn more.

Panel Discussion

Speakers

Method Gundidza

Gerald Miles

Zhengxi Yang

Chair

Sinéad Fortune

Languages

English

13:00 - 14:00 GMT
Monday, 11 January

Great Grains: Revival of Heritage Grains Around the World

Communities globally are facing unprecedented strain from climate collapse, soil degradation and commercial pressures. However, a return to older varieties of crops vital to the health and wellbeing of growers and their communities has presented a promising and enriching path forward. Drawing from grassroots experiences around the world from farmers in South Africa, China, and Wales this session explores the opportunities our heritage grains present to us to reconnect with more resilient, diverse crops and vibrant traditions through a discussion of millet, rice, and oats and the people who grow them. Although climates, conditions, and situations may differ, the growers offer universal advice on reviving connections to these life-giving grains and aim to inspire similar action in other communities.