The event was hosted by Lloyds Bank Agriculture and focused on the future of farming, changing consumer habits and diversification.
Adam, who along with his business partner Duncan Andrews, built a tenanted farm in the Cotswolds into a successful visitor attraction, delivered a talk to 25 farmers and rural estate managers from across Hampshire, Wiltshire and Dorset. He spoke about the issues currently facing the agricultural sector.
Speaking at the event, Lloyds Bank farming ambassador Adam said: “Despite many aspects of farming remaining unchanged over the years, we can’t say the same about the economic and political landscape in which we operate. This is why it’s so important for those who own and run farming businesses to constantly look at ways to evolve and grow.”
Adam stressed the importance of having alternative revenue streams and gave examples of how he has done this, such as adding a cross country facility for horses, conferencing, a farm shop and even expanding into a licensed premises to supply locally produced drinks – all whilst farming around 4,000 acres.
Adam added: “Bringing a new type of customer onto the farm through these different activities also acts as a great opportunity to showcase UK farming, and the fantastic products we produce. It can provide the transparency needed to help build up trust and confidence with consumers around welfare standards.
“The best advice I can offer is to take time to reflect on your farming operation, prepare and then make plans to change. Make sure you’re considering ever evolving consumer demand and, above all, share best practice and learn from others.”
As well as providing the venue for the event, Newlyns Farm owner and Lloyds Bank customer Rob Janaway took part in the discussions. With a mixed farming business producing all the beef, pork & lamb for the Newlyns Farm Shop, Rob has been at the helm of the 1,400-acre, fourth generation family business since 1997. He spent time with Adam on the day discussing his vision for the business, including expanding the established retail lettings business, onsite storage facilities, and looking back at the addition of a dedicated cheese room and fishmongers to his farm shop & café in 2018.
Adam was joined at the event by Lloyds Bank Agriculture relationship director, Victoria Read, and area director for the South East region, Ian Webb. Ian offered insight into the current financial market and broader economic conditions. He said: “During times of uncertainty, it’s important that farming businesses have a trusted banking partner on-hand. We can help agriculture professionals prepare for the future by ensuring they have the working capital available to continue to grow and prosper.”
The Newlyns Farm event formed part of a full day programme for Adam. He later joined Lloyds Bank’s head of agriculture, Andrew Naylor, at The Farmer’s Club in Central London, together with director general of the Food and Drink Federation, Ian Wright, and Craig Anderson, chief executive of The Scottish Salmon Company. They discussed the future of farming and food in the UK.