Hay Festival will look at farming and food issues

Hereford Times: The farming landscape will figure large during Hay Festival. The farming landscape will figure large during Hay Festival.

THE Hay Festival will begin with a day focusing on farming and making the literature site more sustainable.

The annual event kicks off on May 22 with the Hay-on-Earth 2014 Forum that will look at food and farming futures.

Andy Fryers, Hay-on-Earth director, said farming is integral to the festival.

He said: “It has shaped the landscape in which we are sited, provides the food to nourish our visitors and is a crucial economic driver in this area.

“It has and always will be, represented strongly in the Hay Festival programming both to raise awareness of farming issues and to set challenges to the industry.”

The morning forum will be followed by a debate hosted by Rob Yorke about factory farming at 1pm on the Good Energy Stage.

Speakers will include Guy Smith, vice president of the NFU, and Philip Lymbery – the author of ‘Farmaggedon’.

This will be followed by a talk entitled Field Labs: A Grassroots Research Revolution.

Helen Browning, director of the Soil Association, Brecon farmer Kevin Thomas and Bristol University researcher Eric Morgan will be the experts present at that event.

On May 24, Alun Davies, the Welsh Government minister for natural resources and food will be talking about sustainably growing Wales with Andy Fryers at 7pm.

Meanwhile, on May 29, agronomist Jonathon Harrington and vet Barney Sampson will lead a tour to Bredwardine Farm when there will be demonstrations of sheep dog working.

The tour meets at the box office at the festival at 9am, and coaches will return to the festival for 1pm.

Harrington and Sampson return to take another group to visit the Welsh Venison Centre on May 30.


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