The National Farmers’ Union (NFU) is seeking “forward-thinking” English and Welsh arable growers to join its combinable crops board.

The closing date for applications is Wednesday, April 17, 2024, and candidates may be invited to an interview with the selection panel.

From the uncertainty over plant protection products to the impact of the Sustainable Farming Incentive (SFI) on arable rotations, the NFU said the combinable crops sector is facing a period of significant change.

On top of this, growers are competing in a “supply chain that lacks transparency” and are facing unprecedented weather conditions that are having a drastic impact on farm business profitability.

In order to complement and balance the “existing range of skills and expertise” on the combinable crops board, the union said it is looking to appoint farmer members as appointees to the national board.

In particular, the board is seeking experience on:

  • Data;
  • Fertiliser;
  • Organics;
  • Precision breeding.

Interviews will take place the week commencing April 22 via Microsoft Teams. If successful, the first board meeting applicants will be required to attend is on Wednesday, May 22, 2024.

Board members

The NFU is seeking applicants that are active arable growers with a “good understanding” of the sector.

They must also be forward thinking and have strong communication skills.

Board agendas are wide ranging and potential applicants must demonstrate a sound understanding of the policy and trade issues affecting the combinable crops industry, the NFU said, as well as a willingness to connect with the wider NFU membership.

Successful candidates are appointed for two years and will be expected to attend six meetings a year, typically at Stoneleigh, Warwickshire or the NFU’s London office.

Attendance at other supply chain, government or NFU meetings as a representative of the board will be required from time to time.

In return, the chosen applicants will receive an honorarium, paid monthly, and reimbursement of reasonable expenses.

Interested members should contact the NFU’s combinable crops team with a CV setting out experience, skills and interests, along with a personal statement.