Tag Archive for 'farming'

How farming can butter up journalists

The past few weeks have been very quiet in Farmers Weekly Towers. At one point, there were so few people in the office that I was worried I’d got confused and accidentally come to work on a Sunday. The supply of serious news always tail off during the summer months thanks to the end of […]

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The mega WI

“You youngsters like things big,” the old dear in the back of the taxi said to me yesterday morning, sucking in her cheeks. “We prefer small things – small businesses, small farms. “Whole villages will be ripped up to make way for those giant diary farms, it’s disgusting. I hope the resolution gets passed.” I’d […]

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Naked ambition

I have a confession to make. If you were at the Farmers Club lunch in London yesterday listening to me speak, in my head you were starkers. Yep, that’s right – completely nakey. Even the tablecloth didn’t spare your blushes. Imagining your audience is naked is one of those age-old tips that’s always bandied about […]

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Doing porridge for a farm photo

When I was on holiday in Florida a couple of years ago, I managed to convince my friends to pull our hire car over so I could stop off to take some photos of an orange grove. Not being farmer-types, they had a bit of a whinge about the delay. They couldn’t have cared less […]

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The funny side of farming

I managed to hold it together until the stereo started blaring out “Where’s your sausage gone?” to the tune of ‘Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep’. It was at that point – stood outside Downing Street in front of a 16ft, shiny, hovering sausage – that I collapsed onto the floor in hysterical laughter. You have to […]

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A possible hairy situation for the NFU

Dear oh dear. I can’t image the NFU team are a bunch of happy bunnies at the moment. Having given DEFRA secretary Caroline Spelman a telling off this week for not taking farming seriously enough, this morning it’s emerged government plans for a badger cull to tackle bovine TB are being delayed. The setback until […]

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The day I met a proper journalist

Had I not chosen a career path which had taken me down a bizarre route into a niche avenue of journalism, I would have like to have become a proper writer on a national newspaper. Like John Pilger, perhaps. Or Jay Rayner. Y’know, Jay Rayner. The one who’s the stunt double for Marco Pierre White […]

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The DEFRA love-in turns sour

After the glamour of the Soil Association conference in Manchester last week, this week I’m at the NEC in Birmingham for the National Farmers Union’s annual meeting. With no general election on the immediate horizon, union president Peter Kendall in the hot seat for another year and a DEFRA team widely seen as sympathetic towards […]

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The end is nigh

So this is it. After three countries, 101 days, 41 different towns and cities, seven changes in time zone and more than 100 blog posts, I’m on my way home. I’ve met some amazing people along the way, visited incredible farms and businesses, and seen some amazing scenery. I’ve nearly been kidnapped, driven around a […]

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How the floods have hit farmers

I’ve had a go at describing what the floods are like over in Queensland, but this email I received today from past Nuffield scholar Ronald Thompson gives a better impression of what farmers are going through over in the worst-hit areas. Ronald farms near Chinchilla, about 300km north-west of Brisbane. Chinchilla was just getting back […]

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