Jordans Sustainable Agriculture Bursary Virtual Launch Event 2020

On Thursday 19th November, Jordans and The Prince’s Countryside Fund held (PCF) a virtual launch event for the 2020 Sustainable Agriculture Bursary Winners. They were joined by some of the 2019 winners, and Nuffield scholar Alastair Trickett.

The winners first learnt about how Bill and David Jordans discovered granola in the USA and brought it back to their family mill and thus 35 years ago Jordans Cereals was born! However, what was key for Bill and David was that the ingredients within the granola were ‘nature-friendly’ and this remains key to their business today, seen in the unique Jordans Farm Partnership initiative.

The PCF shared some of their work as a Charity with the students, including why their ten-year partnership with Jordans is so important. The six winners then went on to learn all the things they could use their bursary for, from events (such as shows and conferences), to trips abroad and agricultural training - many options with the key focus to further their knowledge of sustainable agriculture. Following this, several of the 2019 winners shared some of the experiences and events they have attended as a result of the award, and how they have still made the most of the funding despite being in lockdown.

After a short break, the students were introduced to Alastair Trickett, JFP farmer, Nuffield Scholar and chairman of the Future Farmers of Yorkshire, who delivered the first ‘career lifeline’. As part of the bursary, the students are given opportunities to widen their networks and attend exclusive events, which will include several career and skills workshops throughout the year. Alastair kicked off the series, sharing his experiences working in industry for a decade after university before returning to the family farm. Now he is involved in mixed farming alongside estate management and is a passionate advocate for regenerative farming.

Alastair’s key piece of advice for the bursary winners was: “make the use of the mentors, develop a relationship with them – you can learn huge amounts from other people”.

2020 bursary winner from the Royal Agricultural University, Eliot Pears said: “Listening to Alastair talk about his career has had a big impact on how I am looking at my future. It was incredibly interesting to hear how he thought it was likely that many family farms would sell up in the next few years. As a result it has made me consider how some of these could survive by becoming more sustainable and by looking at adopting more modern approaches to food production.”

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