Call for open doors day to show reality of country life
With traditional farming under fire from everyone from environmentalists to vegans, farmers have been urged to open their businesses so that the general public can see how life really is down on the farm.
LEAF or to give it its full title, Linking Environment And Farming was set up to bridge the gap between farming life and town dwellers and this week, it appealed to farmers to open their gates on the 9 June to give the public a first- hand insight into farming.
“We are calling on more farmers across England, Scotland and Wales, of every size and every sector, to fill the gaps across the country, open their farm and to share their story,” said LEAF Open Farm Sunday Manager, Annabel Shackleton.
“We need more f arms to respond to the public’s compelling appetite to visit a farm and learn more about where their food comes from and how it is produced. It’s the perfect time for farmers to strengthen the connection with their customers when the industry is being challenged by policy changes, dietary trends and, potentially, of cheap foreign imports.”
Of the 362 farms that hosted a LEAF Open Farm Sunday event last year, one quarter did so for the first time.
The farms involved encompassed all types of farm enterprise- arable, livestock and dairy through to horticulture.
So far more than 20 farmers in Scotland have signed up to take part in this year’s initiative but LEAF are keen to inspire many more to take part.
Shackelton added, that even at this late stage some four weeks ahead of the Open Day there was still time to organise a small event such as a farm walk for a few people.
Dispelling the notion that host farms have to be multi enterprise units, she said that it was up to the host farmer what was on offer.
“You decide what size of event to run, what visitors see, for how long and can manage visitor numbers through our free online ticketing service. Every event matters and ever y conversation helps bridge that gap between producers and consumers.”
Any farmer or crofter who host san event can access a range of free resources including flyers, postcards, gate banners, arrows and information posters to help promote their event once they register on the LEAF Open Farm Sunday website.
0 Farmers have been asked to open their gates on 9 June