Speakers Revealed for LILIS 2017!

The Scottish Organic Producers Association (SOPA) have revealed the lineup of experts who will be speaking at this year’s Livestock In Low Input Systems conference (LILIS).

The annual LILIS conference looks at the successes and challenges of livestock production in organic, upland and low-input systems. This year’s event brings together some innovative thinkers to discuss the mutual relationships between soils, plants, animals and humans in farming.

In the current Brexit climate, farmers are facing inevitable change. LILIS will introduce some innovative thinking about building farm business resilience from the ground up. Delegates can expect to be inspired by take home messages that will make a difference to their business.

Tickets cost £31.54 (including booking fee and VAT) and can be booked online at Eventbrite: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/lilis-livestock-in-low-input-systems-2017-tickets-32616351385

There are four speakers at this year’s event who will all be discussing their experiences within the organic industry and presenting ideas that the conference attendees can take home and apply to their own farms and businesses.


Host Gordon Whiteford with his family

Gordon Whiteford, first generation Farmer, Nuffield Scholar and the host of this year’s LILIS conference will be discussing his organic rotations and how livestock fit into the farm management plan, after taking on the Fochabers Estate tenancy in 2012. Gordon is growing peas and barley together for combining and feeding to livestock, an intercropping principle that has been successfully employed on other organic farms in the North east of Scotland.

Andrew (Andy) Howard landscape

Andrew Howard

The other speakers are Andrew Howard, Nuffield Scholar and farmer from Kent, whose farming philosophy revolves around changing the way he treats soil, either by reducing tillage or by introducing rotation of different crops including cover crops and legumes. Andrew’s conservation approach to farming is centred on moving from an input-intensive farm to a knowledge and management intensive-farm.


Emily Grant

Emily Grant is a Knowledge Transfer Specialist with Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) and has considerable knowledge in grazing management, as well as co-ordinating the QMS Grazing Groups Project since 2014.


Alec Brewster

SOPA Chairman Alexander Brewster has successfully introduced rotational grazing to his Perthshire farm, and advocates the intrinsic links between pasture production, utilisation and kilos of meat sold per hectare.

Debs Roberts, Policy Manager at SOPA, had the following to say about the event:

“We’re really excited to welcome all four speakers to their year’s LILIS conference, and we hope that the delegates will get a lot to take home from the event. It’s an uncertain time for farmers at the moment, so we hope that this year’s conference will introduce some new thinking and a positive look to the future.”


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