LEAF Education, in partnership with Coleg Cambria Llysfasi and Bayer, has launched its 2022 National Food, Farming and Natural Environment competition.

Now in its fourth year, the competition is leading the way in opening young peoples’ eyes to the highly skilled and technologically advanced agri-careers available within our sector.

Since the competition first launched in 2018, more than a third of the high achieving students who have taken part have gone on to study at land-based colleges.

Most importantly, all students involved, have reported that taking part in the competition ‘positively changed their perception of the farming industry’.

With the theme ‘Farming is about working with the natural environment’ the competition engages secondary school students with farming, food production and the natural environment, with a chance to win inspiring on-farm experiences.

Carl Edwards, LEAF’s Director, Education and Public Engagement said “Last year we saw huge growth in the number of entries to the competition and during the process, it was wonderful to see a real change in students’ understanding of food production.

"Gen-Z are becoming more engaged, conscientious ambassadors of their role in creating a more sustainable planet and it’s really exciting to capture this enthusiasm, while demonstrating and showcasing the range of future career opportunities available within the agricultural sector."

Entries are now open to secondary schools (years 9-11) across England and Wales, with teachers invited to submit an application explaining why they feel their school deserves a place in the competition.

The competition will see entrants whittled down to ten semi-finalist schools who will enjoy on-farm visits, followed by a final activity filled weekend for the top six schools, at Coleg Cambria Llysfasi in North Wales.

Students will take part in a wide range of hands-on farm activities with the weekend culminating in a debate around a farming related hypothesis on the important role soil has in sustainable food production.

The winning school will be crowned winner of the ‘National Competition in Food, Farming and Natural Environment 2022’.