Results come through from Organic Studies Centre
Cornwall’s new Organic Studies Centre is about to publish the first of its bi-annual technical bulletins, containing the results of its trials on organic farming methods.
The centre, based at Duchy College’s Rosewarne site, was set up with Objective One help to deliver organic trials and demonstrations for the Cornish agricultural and horticultural industries, as well as supporting the organic sector and assisting in improving the viability and competitiveness of organic farm business.
Next month (June), the centre is also about to start work on a national programme of trials looking into the development of improved guidance for fertility crops in organic farming after winning the bid for the project, which is being funded by DEFRA.
Since it was set up last July, the centre has attracted great interest from Cornwall’s organic sector and has run various one-day courses for farmers, at a number of venues - including organic farms around Cornwall. The courses, attended by up to 40 farmers, have covered various different aspects of organic production – from dairy cattle forage management to homeopathy.
Farm walks and demonstrations are held regularly at the Coswinsawsin Organic Demonstration Farm. The final one of 2001 resulted in a full-page spread in Farmer’s Weekly magazine. A representative from British Sugar also commented that their organic sugar beet was the best in the UK.
Staff from the centre have also presented papers at an international conference in Athens and at a conference at Aberystwyth hosted by the Organic Centre Wales.
This April, a party of 18 Cornish farmers were also taken to Aberystwyth to visit organic research farms run by ADAS and IGER.
Copies of the new bulletin will shortly be available from the Organic Studies Centre, Duchy College, Rosewarne, Camborne TR14 0AB tel 01209 722100.
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