Zoom into Soil: Sustainable Farming

Jun 5, 2024 | Videos

In this webinar, Don Lobb, former farmer and long-time soil advocate from Canada, and Prof. Andrew Neal, research scientist at Rothamsted Research, discuss sustainable farming on soils.

Our first speaker is Don Lobb who presented ‘Sustainable Soil Management – Experience, Observation, Choices’. Don Lobb is a former farmer and long-time soil advocate from Canada. Don owned a successful farming operation in Ontario, Canada, which began as a forage-based livestock operation and over time became a model for sustainable management of soil, water and the natural environment. It attracted visitors from six continents and was the site of more than 50 major research projects. He has served as a consultant and on advisory boards for federal and provincial soil and water initiatives and for the University of Guelph. Don has developed, applied and promoted soil care practices and the soil care ethic. His dedication, example and leadership have been recognized provincially, nationally and internationally.

Our second speaker is Andrew Neal who presented ‘A Balancing Act: Plough or Spray? Navigating Trade-offs for Optimal Soil Function’. Prof. Andrew Neal is a Research Scientist at Rothamsted Research. His research is focussed on understanding the integrated behaviour of plant-microbe-soil systems, developing a theory of soil as an extended composite phenotype in the process. Combining modern techniques such as shotgun metagenomics and X-ray computed tomography, and borrowing heavily from the extended phenotype concept developed by Dawkins, the emerging processual view of biology and critical systems theory, he is working with colleagues to develop a radically different way of thinking about soil.

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