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Agroforestry – a win/win for farmers and the environment?

November 30th marked the start of National Tree Week during which Friends of the Earth held a National Tree Summit, calling for ambitious tree targets in the upcoming England Tree Strategy to tackle the climate and biodiversity crises.  Farming and trees were high on the agenda, with two presentations on agroforestry.  NFFN member and arable farmer Stephen Briggs announced the launch of the ELM agroforestry tests and trials, together with a call for expressions of interest for participation in the scheme.  We also hosted Helen Browning of the Soil Association talking of the potential of agroforestry in contributing to UK tree targets.

We were also delighted to hear support for agroforestry from other speakers, including Lord Deben, Chair of the Committee on Climate Change, and Forestry Minister Lord Goldsmith, as well as Woodland Trust Chief Executive Darren Moorcroft emphasising the importance of trees outside of woodland.


The presentations are available at the links below:


Agroforestry off the starting blocks: the launch of the Defra ELM agroforestry tests and trials pilot – Stephen Briggs, arable farmer and agroforester.

Stephen’s presentation can be found at 16 minutes 30 seconds here: Session 3: Funding and support for trees

You can register an interest in involvement with the ELM Agroforestry Test & Trial here.


Agroforestry – its capacity to deliver a win/win for farmers and the planet – Helen Browning, Chief Executive, The Soil Association

Helen’s presentation can be viewed at 41 minutes and 50 seconds here: Session 2: How can we achieve delivery at scale for climate and biodiversity – what does it look like and how can a range of different approaches contribute?


For anyone who missed the day but wishes to catch-up on the event, here’s the agenda and below are links to the other sessions.

Introduction to the Summit, and Session 1: The scale of the challenge.

Ministerial address by Forestry Minister The Right Hon Lord Goldsmith.

Session 4: Landowners and trees.

Session 5: Local authorities and community action on trees

Images courtesy of Stephen Briggs