2019 FRA/FARMA Conference

The Annual Conference and Trade Show is the must attend event of the year. Two days full of farm shop tours, inspirational speakers, fascinating case studies, a great range of trade show exhibitors and networking events.

The Annual Dinner and awards will reveal the winners of the best Farm Shops, Farmers' Markets, Pick Your Own, Cafes & Restaurants and the Associate Member of the Year.



For Trade Show stand bookings and sponsorship opportunities click here



The Oxford Belfry Hotel, Oxfordshire 

25-27 February 2019



Mon 25 - Wed 27 February 2019

Conference Highlights

  • Monday 25th - informal networking roving dinner in the centre of Oxford
  • Tuesday 26th - Three amazing retail tours to choose from visiting a range of farm retailers and complimentary business in the region.
  • Tuesday 26th - Annual Dinner & Awards
  • Wednesday 27th - Trade exhibition, meet key industry suppliers, opportunity to build contacts and learn new skills
  • Wednesday 27th - Annual Conference with a great range of speakers, workshop sessions and more. 

Download the conference flyer here

Conference Agenda

Monday 25 February

7pm Networking Roving Dinner

All aboard the coaches for a roving dinner in the Centre of Oxford. Have your starter, main & desert in three different restaurants. An opportunity to relax, renew old acquaintances and meet new members. We will be visiting three fantastic Oxford restaurants. Coach will depart Oxford Belfry Hotel at 7pm. Return coach journey included in the price.

Turl Street Kitchen

The Pint Shop

No.1 Ship Street 

Tuesday 26 February

Farm Retail Tours

Three differently themed tour opportunities. Each coach will tour will be led by a dedicated facilitator to ensure all attendees have an informative day visiting different farm retailers and associated businesses. The tours will take in a diverse range of retail venues including Millets, Bicester Village & Cobbs Farm shop.

Tour 1: Planning For Growth

Cobbs Farm Shop & Kitchen formed the foundations of what is now a specialist group of half a dozen independent farm shops. Visit the original Cobbs at Hungerford and the new Cobbs farm shop at Englefield where an unused cow shed is being transformed into a beautiful farm shop and café due to open mid-February. Plus visit to Millets Farm Shop one of the UK’s leading farm retailers which first opened over 40 years ago and continues to develop.

Tour 2: Merchandising Matters

Merchandising is the focus of this tour with the morning spent at Bicester Village with presentations from merchandising experts and chance to explore the Village outlets and pop-up catering units. The afternoon will visit Becketts Farm Shop named BBC Good Food Show’s Best Midlands farm shop, Restaurant, Cookery School & Conference Centre. The day will conclude with a visit to Dayelsford Organics to see the way they merchandise, brand and display.

Tour 3: Millets In Depth

Spend a full day at Millets exploring how the business has grown to become a diversified retail and leisure destination. Large farm shop, garden centre, restaurant, wedding venue, falconry centre, maize maze, PYO site & more. Millets continue to develop their offering with the new Sprouts Play Barn opening just over a year ago. The day will be led by Insight6 with a range of presentations and behind the scenes tours with Millets' managers.


7pm Celebration Night Dinner & Awards - Black Tie (optional)










A drinks reception will be held among the trade stands followed by a delicious 3 course dinner when the winners of the 2019 FRA awards will be announced. A celebration night with entertainment & music. 

Dress - many will choose to wear Black Tie but this is by no means a requirement. 


Your host for the evening is presenter and comedian Aaron James. Aaron has hosted events for companies including Virgin Atlantic, BOSCH,Aston Martin, HSBC, I.O.D & Vodaphone. Television appearances on Friday Night with Jonathan Ross, C4 Big Breakfast, Only Fools & Horses and on radio shows on Radio 2, Talksport and 5 live. Aaron will provide some light entertainment after the dinner and host the awards.


Thanks to our wine sponsor Dalziel  



Wednesday 27 February

Conference and Trade Exhibition




Conference Day Programme Wed 27th Feb

08.30-09.20Tea/Coffee chance to visit the trade show 
09.20-09.30Conference WelcomeRobert Copley
09.30– 09.40FRA Chairman's WelcomeMilly Stokes
09.40– 10.20Keynote: Cutting through the noise - with so much noise bombarding consumers how do you ensure that your messaging cuts through and you get noticed?Grant Leboff, Sticky Marketing
10.25– 11.10WORKSHOP Session 1 (45min) 
11.10– 11.50Break tea/coffee served in the trade show 
11.50– 12.35WORKSHOP Session 2 (45 Min) 
12.35– 14.00Lunch served in the trade show 
14.00– 14.45WORKSHOP Session 3 (45min) 
14.50– 15.30Savvy Retail & Shopper TrendsCatherine Shuttleworth
15.30– 15.40Closing RemarksRobert Copley
15.40– 16.30Tea/Coffee final chance to visit the trade show 


Workshops - choose one workshop per session

WORKSHOP Session 1: 10.25-11.10
A: Influencer Marketing - what it is, how to use it and why it matters. How it can drive awareness and footfall - Grant Leboff

B: Delivering a customer experience beyond your wildest dreams - Jonathan Winchester, Insight6

C: Advice and tips on staff recruitment and managing underperforming employees - A panel of in-house HR managers and advisors.

WORKSHOP Session 2 11.50-12.35
A: Content Marketing - with digital channels being so important, every business today has a media element. This workshop explains how to create compelling content, at scale, in order to ensure your digital channels are utilised effectively - Grant Leboff

B: The future of packaging. Public concern over plastics impacts Farm Shops and Farmers’ Markets. What are the alternatives and just how green are they? - A panel of packaging experts & users.

C: Merchandising, Margins & Manpower, how to increase profits in your retail business - A panel of Farm shop owners & retail experts.

D: EPOS & mobile payment systems, emerging trends and technologies - A panel of industry experts & end users

WORKSHOP Session 3 14.00- 14.45
A: Findings from the Savvy Shopper Panel of over 1,000 UK shoppers - Catherine Shuttleworth, Savvy

B: The future of packaging. The trend away from plastics impacts Farm shops and Farmers’ markets. But what are the alternatives and just how green are they? - A panel of packaging experts & users

C: How to save money on your energy bills. Total Energy Solutions with case study examples

D: Delivering a customer experience beyond your wildest dreams. Jonathan Winchester, Insight6


For speaker details click here


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

Tickets are now on sale.

EventDate & TimeMember Price *Non-Member Price
Roving DinnerMon 25 Feb 19.00-23.00£40£40 
Retail Tours

Tue 26 Feb    8.30 - 17.00

£110 £220 
Retail Tours 3+ people #Tue 26 Feb£85  N/A
Awards Dinner

Tue 26 Feb   19.00 - late

£45 £45 
Conference & Trade Show

Wed 27 Feb   08.30 - 16.30

£110 £220 

Conference & Trade Show 3 + People #

Wed 27 Feb

£85  N/A

 All Prices + VAT


* A Members Coupon Code has been emailed, posted on the closed Facebook group, and can be found in the members section of the website, apply the code online to unlock the half price member's rate.

# The first two people from a member organisation are charged at £110 pp + VAT (Member early bird rate). Additional members of your team are charged at £85pp + VAT. 

Tickets purchased on the website do not carry a booking charge. All tickets booked directly with the FRA office will be subject to a £5 fee per ticket. Please ensure you read the terms and conditions as provided on the ticketing website.



To encourage the next generation of Farm Retailers the FRA board have made 25 free free places available for the conference day for anyone aged 25 or under. The offer is limited to one free place per paying delegate. To apply for a free place please email the FRA/FARMA office info@farmretailassociation.co.uk.


Please book your tickets as soon as possible. After 15th February the price of all tickets will increase by 15%. 


Trade Show

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

Details about taking a stand at the trade show and sponsorship opportunities can be found by clicking the link below.

Trade Show Exhibiting & Sponsorship Opportunities 2019 click here


Hotel Booking

To book accommodation for the event, please contact the DoubleTree by Hilton Oxford Belfry hotel on 0800 028 8694 and quote FRA or FARMA. Rates for Mon 25th Feb are £87 single £97 Double B&B and on Tue 26th it is £97 single, £107 Double. Rooms are subject to availability and should be booked by 25th Jan for the best prices.

Other hotels are available nearby including...

Ramada Oxford

Travelodge Oxford Wheatley

The Oxfordshire Golf Hotel & Spa


Conference Day Main Sponsor