6th October 2023


Rural Rap


While traditionally the end of summer would bring the growing season to an end, Clock House Farm’s river source heat pump allows Oli and his team to heat their polyhouses with renewable energy and keep growing soft fruit – and their business – into December.

Read more. 


Around £2,000 worth of damage was caused to signage at Oare Marshes, near Faversham.
Kent Wildlife Trust has responded to a vandal who caused thousands of pounds worth of damage to signage at a nature reserve, by highlighting how car-parking charges help the charity protect nature.

Read more. 

A fresh start for Biodiversity Net Gain 

With January 2024 announced as the new start date for Biodiversity Net Gain (BNG), CLA Chief Land Use Policy Adviser Susan Twining offers advice on BNG and how to find and supply biodiversity units.

Read more.

Groceries Code Adjudicator reflects on past and looks to future at annual conference

Hundreds of representatives of suppliers, trade associations and the Retailers attended the GCA’s tenth annual conference on 28 September 2023.

The conference marked ten years since the creation of the GCA, providing an opportunity to reflect on the work of the GCA and how the industry has changed over the past decade.

Read more.

CPRE manifesto for the next UK government launched

As the 2023 party conferences begin, we have launched our manifesto for the next UK government, outlining four key areas of priority for the countryside, climate, communities and wildlife.

2024 looks set to be the year of an era-defining election, with the new government facing a myriad of environmental crises as well as a broken housing market.

Read more. 

‘Disappointing’: Agriculture left out of new shortage occupation list 

The agriculture and horticulture industries have been left out of the latest shortage occupation list, with the NFU calling the move ‘disappointing’.

Read more.

AHDB outlines levy payment increases for first time in at least 12 years

AHDB has announced proposals to increase levy payments as the organisation’s spending power has ‘greatly reduced’ by rising costs.

The proposals, which would start in the 2024/25 financial year, have been published today (4 October) by AHDB’s sector councils.

Read more. 

Minette Batters to step down as NFU president 

Minette Batters has announced her intention to step down as NFU president next year after six years in the role.

The Wiltshire mixed farmer will step down as president of the union in February 2024, according to a report by The Grocer.

Read more.
FPC Fresh Awards winners crowned

Winners have been announced in the FPC Fresh Awards 2023, which took place at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London on Friday 29 September. Winners from Kent included AC Goatham & Son.

Read more. 

South East water firms have highest complaint rates – report says

Three water companies serving the South East have the highest complaint rates in the country, a report has found.

Southern Water is the UK’s most complained about provider of water and sewerage with Thames Water coming second, according to the Consumer Council for Water (CCW).

Read more. 

Farming minister urges more sign ups to new online skills service

Farming Minister Mark Spencer has thrown his weight behind a campaign encouraging farmers and farm workers to test a new online skills and careers service.

Hundreds have already signed up for the Institute for Agriculture and Horticulture’s (TIAH), which offers tailored advice and tools to support career development.

Read more. 

Action to support rural communities announced 

100,000 homes and businesses in the most remote and rural parts of the UK will be further supported to access substantially improved broadband connections, under plans outlined by the Secretary of State for Rural Affairs Thérèse Coffey (Monday 2 October).

Read more.



RABI Harvest Lunch - Saturday 21 October 2023

The Wishful Thinker, Lenham Heath Rd, Sandway, ME17 2HY

12 noon arrival 12.30pm sit down for two course meal with a cash bar

TICKETS: £35 per person
AUCTION and RAFFLE on the day – donations of prizes are welcome


Romney Marsh slow cooked lamb shank, mash potato, braised red cabbage, runner beans, mint sauce OR

Wild mushroom, tarragon risotto, with Twineham parmesan, truffle oil and rocket (vegan option available)


Bookings Robert Pickard or Marian Montgomerie Email: pickard190@btinternet.com or marian@fgpierce.com

If you are unable to attend but would like to support us, a donation or contribution of a raffle item would be much appreciated.

The National Fruit Show - 1st & 2nd November 2023

Kent County Showground, Detling

9.00am-5pm daily.

Free to attend and full programme of events and speakers over two days including keynote speech given by Minette Batters, President of the NFU.

Tickets to dinner (1 Nov, 6.30pm-midnight) with champagne reception and networking now for sale, contact info@nationalfruitshow.org.uk

Come and celebrate the 90th year of the show and support the industry as it looks forward to a bright future.

For full details, to enter fruit or cider or to register attendance click here.

CLA Rural Business Conference- Thursday 30 November 2023

This year’s CLA Rural Business Conference ‘Competing visions: the future of land’ will help those who own or manage rural land to make sense of the vital role of land in an increasingly political and polarising landscape.

Taking place at the QEII Centre in central London, our flagship event will allow landowners and land managers to explore the complex relationship between themselves, consumers, corporations, governments, environmentalists and political campaigners.

More details.

Farm Expo 2024

6 March 2024

Kent County Showground, Detling