Farming Smarter: investing in our future

Online: webinar

5:00pm 25th March 2021


It is increasingly accepted that agroecology and regenerative farming have huge potential to tackle the climate and nature emergencies, the public health crisis, as part of a fair and green economic recovery – yet the practical realities of helping make the transition are underdeveloped.

Join us for a discussion about a radical solution – a new Agroecology Development Bank – and how it could boost investment in modern and sustainable farm businesses, whilst helping the UK meet its climate goals, restore biodiversity and improve health and wellbeing.

The panel of experts will explore how agriculture could benefit from the same kinds of practical interventions enjoyed by other sectors like energy and transport and why the time is now for this bold move.

About the panel

Sir Ian Cheshire, Chair, FFCC

Sir Ian is the former Non-Executive Chair of Barclays UK and has won a number of awards including lifetime contributions to retailing, green business and the Fortune WEF award for leadership in the circular economy.

Sir Ian was knighted in the 2014 New Year Honours for services to Business, Sustainability and the Environment and is a Chevalier of the Ordre National du Merite of France. Other current principal external appointments: Chairman, Maisons du monde; Chairman, Menhaden plc; Lead non-executive director for the government. More

Dame Caroline Mason, Chief Executive, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation

Before joining Esmée, Caroline was Chief Operating Officer at Big Society Capital and preceding that, Charity Bank. Caroline was also the co-founder of Investing for Good, a social investment advisory firm and one of the first Community Interest Companies. Before joining the social sector, Caroline had an eighteen-year track record of creative and innovative product development in the financial services sector. Caroline is a Board Member of the Environment Agency, a Board Member of the Impact Investing Institute, and Chair of the Foundations Forum. She is also a member of TNL Community Fund Climate Action Fund Advisory Panel, and a member of the Inclusive Economy Partnership Champions Board. More

Sue Pritchard, Chief Executive, Food, Farming and Countryside Commission

Sue is the Chief Executive of FFCC and is focused on leading the organisation in its mission to bring people together to find radical and practical ways to transform our food system and improve our climate, nature, health & economy. Sue brings extensive experience working with leaders in businesses, governments and enterprises, blending the academic and the practical for sustainable systems change. Sue lives with her family on an organic, permaculture, livestock farm in Wales, which accounts for pretty much all of her time outside of FFCC, and is a grounding reminder of the gritty realities of turning ideas into workable actions.

Tony Greenham, Executive Director, South West Mutual and Farming Smarter report co-author

Tony is one of the co-authors of Farming Smarter: investing in our future, and is Executive Director of South West Mutual, a regional mutual challenger bank serving the south west of England and focused on financing a just transition to a low carbon economy. He is also an adviser on sustainability to Lion Trust Asset Management and a Senior Fellow of the Finance Innovation Lab.

He was previously Director of Economics at the RSA and Associate Director, Finance and Economics at the New Economics Foundation. His publications include ‘People Powered Prosperity’, ‘Where Does Money Come From?’ and ‘The British Business Bank: Creating good sustainable jobs’. Tony’s early career was in the City as a chartered accountant and investment banker with Barclays and Credit Suisse.

ffinlo Costain, Chief Executive, Farmwel (event compere)

ffinlo is the chief executive of Farmwel, a think tank working for climate, nature and food security. He produces the Farm Gate podcast, featuring thought leaders discussing the various dimensions of sustainable food systems. ffinlo has a background in politics, farming, NGOs and communications, with expertise in the positioning of agricultural policy in the social and political context.