ORC’s Organic Advisory Service was the first established organic consultancy provider in the UK, but in recent years several other providers of organic advice and consultancy services have developed. From April 2012, ORC has changed the focus of its advisory work, so as to support all organic advisers working in the UK and Ireland with research and information dissemination and other services through the integration of the Institute for Organic Training and Advice (IOTA) within ORC. ORC will continue to deal with technical queries and provide training and other events for producers related to its work, as well as some specialist consultancy services, but ORC no longer provides a one-to-one advisory service for producers. Instead we recommend producers to make us of IOTA accredited advisors, who can provide.
- One-to-one farm advisory visits.
- Access to soil sampling and analysis services as well as interpretation and commentary on the currently available types of analysis.
- Conversion planning – many IOTA consultants have been providing detailed conversion plans for many years and are able to prepare conversion plans for businesses of all sizes and complexity.
- Planning support – a number of IOTA consultants have considerable experience in the provision of agricultural appraisals to support rural planning applications. This support can extend to appearances before planning committees and planning inspectors.
- Communication – IOTA consultants are available to contribute to events and meetings through the delivery of presentations, leading field walks and chairing discussions.
- Training events.
- Bespoke services – IOTA consultants have engaged in a range of specialist activities over the years in response to specific requests from clients and have also engaged in a number of projects.
ORC will continue to work closely with producers on innovation and systems development through its Participatory Research and Demonstration Network.
For further information on training and specialist consultancy services provided by ORC, contact Roger Hitchings.