Farm Environmental Policy
Our farm is located between Aylesbury and the Chiltern Hills. As such we have a chalk stream running through the heart of our farm business and our aim is that it leaves our farm is clear and unpolluted as it arrives. As the chalk soil transitions to heavy Vale clay, groundwater is channelled into the watercourse by land drainage. Ensuring minimal soluble nutrients are carried from ground water to water courses is the number one focus of our environmental policy.
As such we plan to introduce more diverse and numerous cover crops in order to assist direct drilling which we believe will help improve rainwater infiltration rates. This is particularly important as it will reduce run-off, a contributing factor in reduced water clarity. With improved infiltration rates and water holding capacity we hope to achieve improved crop yields whilst at the same time mitigating flood risk further downstream.
We will continue to work with our partners in Landsman Farming LLP a machinery joint-venture in order to minimise our energy use. With our Partners we will continue to invest in technology in order to measure, monitor and improve our resource efficiency with special focus on diesel fertiliser and plant protection product usage.
We believe that by improving our soil management we can deliver water improvements, less herbicide and artificial nitrogen usage whilst at the same time storing carbon in our top soils. As such we believe regenerative farming techniques offer the best opportunity to maximise the farms positive environmental possibilities whilst at the same time minimising any right adverse effects.
It is our hope that selling direct and working with LEAF and LEAF mark will help us find customers who shared these objectives and who will communicate these environmental benefits to our end consumers.
Farm Environmental Plan
Plan for increasing and enhancing biodiversity.
Our plan to increase and enhance biodiversity is outlined in more detail in our landscape and nature conservation and enhancement plan.
Plans for improving soil health and decreasing erosion.
Our soil management plan helps identify soil issues annually and within crop rotations. It also identifies remedial actions and deadlines for works to be undertaken.
Plans for improving water quality and water efficiency.
We believe our pollution management plan is effective in reducing the potential of plant protection products entering the watercourse. We believe our manure management plan maximises the use of organic manures for the benefit of our arable crops, part of our plan to minimise artificial nitrogen application.
Plans for reducing waste production and utilising by-products effectively.
All existing packaging is recycled with a licensed waste management company. We have also been working with Thames Water to utilise their bio solid waste streams, West London Composting to utilise their green compost and continue to actively investigate farmyard manure for straw contracts with local cattle farms in order to utilise their by-products. There are also plans to develop our own green waste recycling centre and work with Landsman Farming Partners two utilise local farm by products in a pelleting plant.
Plans for how efficiency is incorporated into future business development plans.
Because the majority of machinery is run through Landsman farming LLP, our business focuses on utilisation and efficiency through that business partnership. Landsman farming benchmarks physical machinery performance through the Joint Venture Farming Group. Due to our dispersed holding travel time is a KPI measured within Landsman Farming LLP and reviewed annually.
Plans for reducing GHG emissions.
Our benchmarking, we believe our arable operations are some of the most efficient possible. However, there is always room for improvement we acknowledge that a direct drilling system would enable further fuel savings. As previously mentioned for legume nitrogen fixing opportunities in our rotation would reduce our nitrogen fertiliser requirement this is a future opportunity to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions further. However, we also believe that regenerative agriculture would give us the possibility to fix up to 2 tons of CO2 per acre per year (Gabe Brown, Dirt to Soil 2018).
Plans for improving air quality.
At the moment we have no plans for improving air quality other than diverting wood waste to woodchip rather than burning hedge residues.