Hello and welcome to This Week in Farming, your weekly round-up of the best content from the Farmers Weekly website. 

Below are five key topics that got tongues wagging in the past seven days and a look ahead to this week’s Farmers Weekly podcast.

All change at Defra 

Alas, Ranil Jayawardena, we hardly knew thee. Liz Truss’s Defra secretary was not among the cabinet ministers who survived the Rishi Sunak’s cull this week. 

Instead he picked the former PM’s most loyal ally, Therese Coffey, to take his place.  

Will she be breathing a sigh of relief at leaving the Department for Health and Social Care and not having to shepherd the NHS through the winter?

Or will having to deal with actual shepherds be just as much of a pain? We asked farmers and industry for their reaction this week, and here’s my editorial on the topic

About the author

Andrew Meredith

Farmers Weekly editor

Andrew has been Farmers Weekly editor since January 2021 after doing stints on the business and arable desk. Before joining the team, he worked on his family’s upland beef and sheep farm in mid Wales and studied agriculture at Aberystwyth University. In his free time he can normally be found continuing his research into which shop sells London’s finest Scotch egg.


Inheritance battle

How binding is a promise? That’s the essence of a farming case that went all the way to the Supreme Court recently, concerning a long-running dispute between different generations of a farming family. 

Andrew Guest was cut out of his parents’ will after decades of work in the business for little return, having originally been promised he would be in line for an inheritance that would allow him to continue running a viable farming business after their death. 

Find out how much judges finally ruled he was entitled to. 

Carbon trading 

Frequently referred to as a wild west, the nascent carbon trading market has been fraught with controversy over how it should operate and whether it is even ethical at all. 

Arable expert Mike Abram takes an in-depth look at six of the most notable schemes on offer, and separately here at some of the carbon calculators available to help you determine what stocks you actually have. 

Columnist Joe Stanley also has his say on the rocky road to net zero, noting a huge element of farm decarbonisation will by necessity come from the reduction of emissions, or contribution to renewables generation – not just sequestration. 

Driving down drift 

Everyone knows it’s vital that sprays end up only where they’re intended – but can technology help find a way to land more droplets in the target area – saving money and pollution? 

Proponents of magnetic crop spraying say they have the answers but others aren’t so sure about the costly kit. 

This week’s magazine cover story delves into the details of just what can accurately be claimed about this practice. 

And for more futuristic-sounding kit, check out this JCB mobile hydrogen refuelling system, designed to support its growing range of hydrogen-fuelled machinery. 

Listen to the FW Podcast

Don’t forget the latest edition of the Farmers Weekly podcast with Johann Tasker and Hugh Broom, too.

Listen here or bring us with you in the cab by downloading it from your usual podcast platform.

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