Over 150 GCSE students have gained on-farm experience of the agricultural industry as part of the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board’s (AHDB) ‘Farming Food for You’ event.
The students attended the new conference, which is aimed at educating schoolchildren about food provenance and healthy eating, as part of AHDB’s Secondary School Series.
The event was organised by AHDB and LEAF Education in collaboration with the British Nutrition Foundation and it took place at Plumpton College, East Sussex.
The GCSE students were brought on a tour around the college’s dairy farm, which features a robotic milking system and a bakery workshop.
Around 15 local food producers and agri-linked businesses attended the event with the aim of providing students with an understanding of the wider impact of farming and scope of the industry.
Head of education at AHDB, Roz Reynolds said: “It was fantastic to see so many young people experiencing a farm, many for the first time, and engaging with local food producers and farming businesses through hands-on activities.
‘’Much of our work focuses on supporting teachers with resources, so it’s been great to trial an interactive event focused on experiential learning for students themselves directly linked to the GCSE curriculum.”
The conference is part of a series of education pilots AHDB has been running this year with the aim of improving consumers’ understanding of where food comes from as well as developing cooking skills.
Director of education and public engagement at LEAF, Carl Edwards, said: “We are delighted to have partnered with AHDB for the conference.
“It was an exciting event with the brilliant goal of educating young people about the agri-food industry, highlighting the many varied and exciting opportunities within the sector, and allowing them to engage first-hand with many local businesses involved.
“We’re delighted with how the conference went and are looking forward to seeing the impact following on from both pre and post event sessions with schools.’’