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Torpenhow Cheese at Carbon Calling 2022

We were nothing short of honoured to be invited to share a stage with Martin Gott of St James’ Cheese at Holker, and leading independent farming consultant and researcher Liz Genever at Carbon Calling 2022.

This was the inaugural Carbon Calling and the event was the brainchild of Liz herself, bringing together some of the UK’s foremost regenerative farmers and food producers talking about their work, their ethics and their approach to their businesses.

Along with Martin Gott, speakers included Sheila Dillon (BBC Radio 4 – The Food Programme), Janet Hughes (Programme Director for the Future Farming & Countryside Programme), James Robinson (Cumbrian organic dairy farmer) and beef and sheep farmers Alex Brewster (Perthshire), Angus Nelless (Northumberland) and Charley Walker (Scottish Borders).

Held at Sleastonhow Farm, Kirkby Thore in Cumbria, the main speaker was Greg Judy, the farmer and author who has also grown an incredible following on his ‘Regenerative Farmer’ YouTube channel.

With his wife, Jan, they raise cattle, sheep, pigs and chickens on over 1600 acres of land on Green Pastures Farm in Rucker, Missouri where their livestock graze rich pasture. With over 20-years’ experience, Greg has learned how to make farming successful by mimicking nature with his grazing management.

“The event was devised by Liz to bring together some of the more progressive farmers and producers working in the country at present.” Says Mark Lee.

“Liz is a great advocate of knowledge exchange and transfer of learning, and this was a great opportunity to hear first-hand how other farmers were managing their grazing land and pastures, and the benefits to their livestock and, ultimately, to the food we consume.”

“Together with Nic Renison, she managed to pull-together a full schedule of brilliant talks and presentations, discussion sessions and workshops over the weekend and to be asked to participate was something we were both surprised and delighted by.”

Jen and Mark’s talk focused on their journey from ‘high input’ Holsteins, establishing Torpenhow Cheese Company and championing regenerative farming here in Cumbria. “This must have struck a chord with Greg Judy as he filmed an interview with us for his YouTube channel.”

“Greg is nothing short of a legend in the world of regenerative farming as is passionate about two things – healthy farms and healthy farmers. His ethos is that by mimicking nature, his land and water sources are healthier meaning his animals are healthier and that they can help regenerate the soil on their farms.”

“He is also very big on sharing his findings with other farmers – not preaching, not being condescending, but passing on his learning, being honest about what has worked and what hasn’t. It’s an approach we love and given the superb attendance at Carbon Calling, there are plenty of others who agree as well.”

“Greg was someone we discovered and were inspired by through his books ‘How to Think Like a Grazier’ and ‘Comeback Farms’, and can highly recommend them to anyone who cares about the land and how our food is produced.”

Greg Judy talking to farmers at Carbon Calling 2022

“When we started on our own organic and regenerative journey at Park House Farm, it was never with the intention of being more financially attractive or even better for the dairy and production of our cheese – it was simply that we knew in our hearts that it was just the right thing to do.”

“We’re still very much on that journey and it’s fair to say that there’s no end point – being certified as organic was just the start for our farm and we’re now responsible for supporting nature and encouraging even more biodiversity for the good of our herd and our soil.”

Conference images © Liz Genever

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Mark and Jen Lee from Torpenhow Cheese VCompany with Greg Judy, regenerative farmer, at Carbon Calling conference