New Agrovista consultant helps farmers make best use of SFI options


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Agrovista has appointed Leah Williamson as rural consultant and agronomist within its northern regional team to help farmers make the most of new income opportunities as England’s agricultural policy transition gathers pace.

Leah currently offers guidance on the Sustainable Farming Incentive and nutrient management planning, and will also provide advice on Countryside Stewardship and capital grant work as demand builds.

After growing up on the family arable farm near Lincoln, where she helped out and developed a sound grounding in her practical farming skills, Leah obtained an HND at Bishop Burton College followed by a foundation degree in agriculture at Lincoln University.

During this period she worked as a relief sprayer operator and harvest help, and also started agricultural lecturing, which she continued to do for five years. She then joined a national fertiliser distributor for a similar period before taking up her current role with Agrovista last November.

Leah, who is BASIS and FACTS qualified, keeps agronomists and farmers up to date with various policy developments, notably SFI options and grants.

“Most of my work is supporting agronomists and their farmer customers to get the best from these schemes,” says Leah, who now lives on her partner’s dairy farm in Cumbria.

“Working closely with the agronomy team makes sense, as they are already an integral part of a farming business and know what is likely to work best for their customers.

“SFI in particular can fit very well with practical farming if it is implemented correctly; Agrovista’s aim is to keep as much land as possible in production while enabling farmers to make best use of SFI options.

“That has to be the right approach, and I’m really looking forward to helping farmers make use of what’s on offer and to help them to farm as efficiently as possible to help offset the loss of BPS payments.”

Leah Williamson has joined Agrovista’s northern regional team as rural consultant and agronomist