The story

by Patrick Holden

Patrick Holden introduces our True Cost Accounting in Food and Farming Conference. For the Prince’s speech, click here.

Patrick grew up in London but was deeply influenced by a year he spent in California at the beginning of the seventies. He returned to the UK to study biodynamic agriculture and started a community dairy farm in West Wales in 1973. It is now the longest established organic dairy farm in Wales, with a herd of 75 Ayrshire cows – the milk from which is made into an award winning cheddar-style cheese by his son, Sam.

Patrick is the founding director of the Sustainable Food Trust whose mission is to promote international cooperation between all those involved in sustainable food production – not just those who are certified organic. Between 1995 and 2010, he was the director of the Soil Association and became a much sought after speaker and campaigner for organic food and farming. He spearheaded a number of prominent food campaigns around BSE, pesticide residues and GM food. More recently, he was a member of the UK Government’s working group on the Foresight Report into Future of Food and Farming and received a CBE for services to organic farming in 2005.

His other current positions include: Patron of the Bio-dynamic Agricultural Association, the Living Earth and the Soil Association Land Trust; Senior Environmental Advisor to JCB and International Ambassador of the Soil Association.

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