2018 FARMA Conference Review

The 2018 FARMA Conference was a great event, full of inspirational speakers, fascinating case studies, a great range of trade show exhibitors and networking events.

See below for 2018 conference highlights.

Details of the 2019 Annual Conference will be available shortly.


The Forest Pines Hotel & Golf Resort, North Lincolnshire


25-27 February 2018

Conference Highlights

  • Sunday night informal networking buffet at the nearby Pink Pig with Gin tasting
  • Four amazing retail tours visited award winning retailers including the opportunity to spend the full day at Cannon Hall Farm a farm diversification success story.
  • Trade exhibition, meet key industry suppliers, opportunity to build contacts and learn new skills
  • Entertaining after dinner speaker on Monday night 

NEW - Click here to download the 2018 Conference Brochure

Conference Agenda

Sunday 25 February

7pm Networking Dinner

The coaches departed at 7pm for the award winning Pink Pig who hosted the first night evening meal, a buffet of delicious local produce. An opportunity to relax, renew old acquaintances and meet new members. 

Monday 26 February

Farm Retail Tours

Four coaches each had dedicated facilitator to ensure all attendees had an informative day on the road.

Tour 1 - RETAILING WITH PERSONALITY (Uncle Henry's, Doddington Hall, Welbeck, Hardy's)

Tour 2 - DIVERSIFICATION (Drewtons, The Pink Pig, William's Den, The Balloon Tree)

Tour 3 - FOOD RETAILING BEST IN CLASS (Hinchliff's, Blacker Hall, Cannon Hall, Farmer Copley's)

Tour 4 - CANNON HALL FARM (Farm Shop, Farm Park, Restaurant, Events Venue. A full day  exploring this diversification success story)

Thanks to all the Farm Shops who welcomed FARMA/FRA members for the Retail Tours

  Download the Farm Shop Tour Guide Brochure


7pm FARMA Celebration Night

 Drinks reception in the trade show area

 Delicious 3 course dinner with a Lincolnshire inspired menu

Former head of Bishop Burton College and charity fundraiser Howard Petch was a superb after dinner speaker. 

Tuesday 27 February

Conference and Trade Event.


 Andrew Thornton, Thorntons Budgens


 Judy Bell MBE, Shepherds Purse


 Harriet Forster, Shopper Anonymous


 James Bate, Amazon

James Sinclair, Entrepreneurs Network


 Susie Emmett, Conference Chair

Conference Day Programme Tue 27th

Main Conference Room

09.30 – 09.35         Conference Welcome - Susie Emmett
09.35 – 09.40         FARMA welcome - Milly Stokes
09.40 – 10.10         Growing people to full potential to differentiate yourself - Andrew Thornton
10.10 – 10.40          DeliciouslYorkshire & Shepherds Purse - Judy Bell OBE

10.40 – 11.20           Break tea/coffee served in the trade show

11.20 – 11.50           Driving online sales at Tulleys Farm - Stuart Beare
11.50 – 12.20           Cannon Hall – Facebook Live & more - Nicky Hyde
12.20 – 12.50           Farmer Copleys branding & social media - Heather Copley
12.50 – 13.00           Panel Debate Q&A Social media marketing

13.00 – 14.20           Lunch served in the trade show

14.20 – 14.50           Amazon current initiatives in the food market - James Bate
14.50 – 15.10           Panel Debate Q&A with James Bate, Andrew Thornton & Judy Bell
15.10 – 15.40           The experience business - James Sinclair
15.40 - 15.50            Closing remarks - Susie Emmett

15.50 – 16.30       Tea/Coffee final chance to visit the trade show stands


Farm Shop Manager’s & Catering Manager's Workshops

11.20 – 12.10           How to run a really fabulously successful coffee shop - Harriet Forster
12.10 – 13.00           Golden Rules of running a Highly profitable food retail business - Ian Kelsall


Farmers’ Market Workshop

11.20 – 11.50           Merchandising Farmers Market stalls - Ian Kelsall
11.50 – 12.20           Farmers Market Certification - NSF 
12.20 – 13.00           What markets need from FARMA - debate


A huge thank you to all the speakers who contributed to the conference day. You can see the biographies and contact details by following the link below.

For Speaker Biographies click here


Video: Conference delegates and exhibitors talk about the benefits of attending the annual conference click here


Trade Show

Over 20 companies were represented at the Trade Show, each dedicated to the farm retail sector to provide delegates with the latest products and services.


Conference Day Main Sponsor