Report on the work of Farmer Networks - showcasing the Cumbria Farmer Network

This report  was commissioned by the Royal Agricultural Society of England. Its purpose was to understand how existing Farmer Networks operate, consider the value of Farmer Networks and positive change the bring to farmers. The Cumbria Farmer Network Ltd is one of the five case studies - it's mission is to "Inform, Educate and Support those involved iwth farming".

The researchers found that Farmer Networks make farmers more self-reliant by taking ownership of challenges. They focus on localities, have social and altruistic as well as commercial objectives and operate as trusted intermediaries between farmers and statutory bodies. They are prepared to look at any challenge raised by their members and they deliver large scale social returns on investment. Upland policy should incorporate the establishment of Farmer Networks in Areas Facing Natural Constraints as a means of building their resilience and new Leader areas should be encouraged to think about developing them. An annual symposium and a central point for the collection of information about them should be established and supported.

The report can be downloaded here

or more informmation on the Cumbria Farmer Network see http://www.thefarmernetwork.co.uk/