TICKETS are on sale for a major conference featuring guest speakers and practical workshops to support the farm retail industry.

The Farm Retail Association (FRA) is set to host its annual conference at the Nottingham Belfry in March with a fresh line-up of guest speakers.

Heather Parry, managing director at the Yorkshire Agricultural Society, said: “We are determined to make this the hottest ticket in town and a not-to-be-missed event for all farm retailers.

“We promise you some of the finest speakers in the sector, as well as some fascinating tours around other farm retail venues in the Nottingham area.

“There will also be a glittering awards ceremony to celebrate the cream of the crop in the industry and we look forward to seeing you in March.”

Guest speakers include Pat Whelan, from James Whelan Butchers in Ireland, who will speak about building a successful butchery business.

Former Countryfile producer and Radio 4 Farming Today presenter, Anna Jones, will discuss media coverage, alongside commercial HR consultant Elizabeth Mills, who is tackling the topic of empowering a team. Paul Chamberlain, who is the commercial director of the Association of Convenience, will explore key trends in food retail and Susan Hallam (MBE) will advise on how to build a social media audience.

The event will round off with a Game Changer Workshop by John Stanley – a leading retail specialist – who will share trends, ideas and solutions tailored for the UK market.

FRA chairman Rob Copley said: “This three-day conference is set to be our best yet. We want to bring together farm retailers from across the UK to network and share ideas on best practice.

“This will also be a chance to reward and celebrate excellence in the sector as we host the annual gala dinner for the Farm Retail Awards 2020.”

This will be the first conference and awards dinner to be organised by new managing agents, Yorkshire Agricultural Society, which took over the running of the association this summer.

The tours will give attendees an in-depth look at businesses they can learn from and each tour is hosted by a representative from each venue.

There will be three different tours: tour one includes Gonalston Farm Shop, East Bridgford Garden & Home Centre and Farndon Fields Farm Shop. Tour two includes Croots Farm Shop & Café, Canalside Farm Shop and Café and Coppice. Tour three includes Welbeck Farm Shop, Chatsworth Estates Farm Shop and Denstone Hall Farm Shop & Café.

To book, visit