As reported to yesterday morning’s Green Café meeting, the Oxford Real Farming Conference (ORFC) is hosting its biggest ever global online event for agroecological farmers, growers and food producers between 7-13 January in an urgent bid to fix our broken food system. ORFC Global 2021 brings together over four thousand delegates, including leading voices in agroecological, organic and regenerative agriculture. It aims to catalyse radical action in the face of multiple global threats including climate change, biodiversity loss, soil degradation, poverty and Covid-19.
Colin Tudge, co-founder of the ORFC, argues that present-day, hyper-industrialised agriculture is a prime cause of all the world’s ills, from climate change and mass extinction to poverty and ill-health – and that to put it right we have to re-think everything else as well, including the economy and our moral attitudes.
Colin says: “It should be eminently possible to provide good food for everyone without wrecking the natural world, and without cruelty or injustice. “We just need to apply the principles of agroecology and food sovereignty – which in general means low-input, mixed farms with plenty of farmers and growers on small to medium-sized farms, geared primarily to local markets.
“Instead the world’s most powerful governments, corporates, and financiers are promoting the complete opposite – high-input monocultures with minimum to zero labour on the largest possible scale, geared to profit in the global market.
“We need to turn things around fast and since our leaders have taken the wrong tack, people who give a damn – and especially farmers – must do what’s needed for ourselves.”
The Oxford Real Farming Conference has grown swiftly from its beginnings in January 2010, when 80 people gathered in Oxford for a half-day event. Over the course of 11 years it has developed into the unofficial conference of the real food and farming movement in the UK.
Further details at: https://orfc.org.uk/programme/