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New director for Organic Centre Wales

Sue Fowler has been appointed as the Director of Organic Centre Wales by Aberystwyth University, following the departure of Dr Nic Lampkin at the end of January.

Sue Fowler joined OCW in 2001, following a career in organics which began in the 1980s with the first organic research project at Aberystwyth University. Later, while living in Scotland, she was an organic farming inspector before returning to Aberystwyth in 1996 to resume her research career.

More recently, as Policy Officer at Organic Centre Wales, she has worked closely with the Welsh Assembly Government on a range of policy issues including the Organic Farming Scheme and the second Welsh Organic Action Plan. She has been Trustee of the Soil Association, and chaired their Standards Board for six years.

“I am delighted to be taking up this appointment, at an interesting and challenging time in the development of the organic sector in Wales,” Sue said. “We are lucky to have a team of highly experienced staff at OCW, providing a range of services to farmers, businesses and consumers including the Organic Development Programme on behalf of Farming Connect and the Organic Conversion Information Service.”

“The organic sector has come a long way since OCW was founded in 2000, when there were fewer than 100 organic farmers in Wales. Now we have just passed the 1000 mark, representing over 8% of the total agricultural area, with some excellent examples of innovation in production and marketing.”

Dr Nic Lampkin has left OCW and Aberystwyth University and taken up a new position as Executive Director of the Organic Research Centre Elm Farm, near Newbury in Berkshire. Nic played a large part in initiating the first Organic Action Plan for Wales which led to the setting up of Organic Centre Wales in 2000, and was Director of OCW from the start.

“The Organic Research Centre Elm Farm is one of the partner organisations involved in running OCW and there will be continued collaboration between the two organisations to support the development of organic farming in Wales, the UK and internationally,” said Nic.

Nic will remain closely engaged with organic policy work in Wales, as a member of the new WAG Strategic Food and Drink Advisory Group, Chair of the Organic Strategy Group (succeeding Andrew Jedwell) and Board Member of Hybu Cig Cymru.

Ends

Further information

Sue Fowler, Director, Organic Centre Wales. 01970 621627/ 07815 529019 / smf@aber.ac.uk

Dr. Nic Lampkin, Director, The Organic Research Centre, Elm Farm 01488 658298/ 07771961279 / nic.l@organicresearchcentre.com

Notes for the editor:

1. Organic Centre Wales (www.organic.aber.ac.uk) was established in 2000 and is funded by the Welsh Assembly Government and operated by a partnership consisting of ADAS, the Organic Research Centre Elm Farm and the Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences, Aberystwyth University.

2. The Organic Research Centre Elm Farm is the UK's leading research, development and advisory institution for organic agriculture, having played a pivotal role in the development of organic research, policy and standards since 1980. For more information see www.organicresearchcentre.com.

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