Exciting times ahead for Gloucestershire’s Agri, Food and Rural Business Group

GFirst LEP’s Business Groups play an instrumental part in driving the strategic approach of key sectors across the county in support of Gloucestershire’s developing Economic Strategy.

Our Agri, Food and Rural Business Group, chaired by Claire Whitworth, Deputy Principal of Hartpury University and Hartpury College, contains many key players in the agriculture, food and rural sector from numerous organisations and professional bodies including the NFU, FWAG, Campden BRI, The Royal Agricultural University and University of Gloucestershire plus many more. 
With a wealth of knowledge at the table, having achieved many projects to be rightly proud of over its 10 years, our Agri, Food and Rural Business Group is gathering further momentum as it moves into its next phase in leading a countywide approach to future business innovation and skills development.

There is so much excellent work already in play across the county and also the opportunity to ‘plug’ emerging gaps and future needs to support farmers, growers and allied industries with navigating the wealth of information and resource out there, ultimately enabling key business decisions to be made and implemented effectively, resulting in further improvements to productivity and efficiency.
As such, a smaller working sub-group is currently developing the detailed vision to be adopted by the group of how we go forward to ‘connect the county’ and ensure effective navigation of information, support and funding for farmers and anyone involved in Gloucestershire’s agricultural and rural network in a user friendly way.

Future skills gaps will also be identified using the extensive industry engagement activity undertaken by Business West to be published in the Gloucestershire Local Skills Improvement Plan shortly and this will be fed into our county solution.
"We really hope that this will be transformational for the county’s food, farming and rural community in the not too distant future. We are currently seeking external funding to support this exciting venture and equally, if there are any individuals out there who wish to get involved, please do get in touch with our Business Group Manager, Paul Woodhouse at paul.woodhouse@gfirstlep.com."Claire Whitworth, Chair of Agri, Food and Rural Business Group

Read more about our Business Groups.

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