Lawrence Woodward OBE
I began my farming life in the early 1970s following the oil crises of those years. “How do we feed ourselves when the oil and other resources run out?” weighed heavily on me. For me the answer was organic farming.
In 1976, I began to convert a family owned mixed, dairy to an organic system. The challenges involved in this led to my co-founding and then directing for 30 years the Organic Research Centre. Here, we developed an innovative research and policy programme; the Organic Advisory Service and farmer-based initiatives including the Organic Milk Suppliers Co-op and Organic Arable. My hands-on farming in those early years was milking our commercial Jersey herd. I became fascinated with the process of practical health management – not just looking for alternatives to antibiotics – but how all aspects of the farm and its management create health or dis-ease. Some things can be managed but there also has to be a mindset change in all those working on the farm. This is the focus of Whole Health Agriculture. I firmly believe the health of soil, plant, animal and man is one and indivisible and it can be a practical reality on all farms.