Meet the Farmers

Let’s Talk about Diversity in Farming – with Flavian Obiero

Flavian manages 130 sows from farrow to finish on a mixed farm in Hampshire which also has sheep, beef, arable and a farm shop. Before he started this role in 2021 he managed the pig unit at Plumpton College in East Sussex. 

Flavian moved to the UK at the age of 15, having grown up in Kenya. The plan was to go to university to study veterinary medicine, but instead he ended up taking a year out after his A-Levels. After completing a week’s placement on a farm, he was offered a job and ended up working there for his gap year. He hasn’t looked back since.

He holds a BSC in Animal Management and Animal Sciences and an MSc in Animal and Livestock Husbandry and Production. He’s currently the Vice Chair of the Young National Pig Association, Deputy Chair of the North East Hampshire branch of the NFU, the South East rep for the NFU’s Next Generation Forum and a trustee of the charity Jamie’s Farm. He’s also one of the most prominent voices calling for greater diversity in British agriculture.

Follow him on instagram here or on twitter here

 

About Ben

Ben Eagle is a freelance rural affairs and agricultural journalist and podcaster. He also produces podcasts for a number of other rural organisations. You can find out more at benjamineagle.co.uk 

Please subscribe to the show and leave us a review wherever you are listening. 

 

Follow us on social media

Instagram @mtf_podcast

Twitter @mtf_podcast

Watch us on Youtube here

 

A-Plan Rural Insurance

This episode is sponsored by our primary sponsor A Plan Rural

 

Show References

Episode with Sarah Langford

Episode with Wilfred Emmanuel-Jones

Pub Yields Podcast

It’s In Our Roots Podcast

 

Timestamps

00:00:27 Ben introduces the show

00:02:32 Flavian comes in.

00:03:25 Why pigs?

00:05:22 Flavian describes his first experience working with pigs. 

00:07:02 What two characteristics about Flavian do we need to know to understand him as a  person? – ‘driven’ and ‘optimistic’

00:10:22 Sponsor message

00:11:08 Flavian’s early years in Kenya.

00:15:29 What did Flavian want to do when he grew up (as a career)?

00:18:20 How did Flavian see rural? [comparison between rural in Kenya and in the UK]

00:21:47 Flavian drives a landrover for the first time. 

00:23:32 Why farming for Flavian?

00:27:00 Flavian gets the job at Plumpton College

00:30:05 The pig unit that Flavian currently works on – a hybrid system. 

00:32:00 It has been a tough time for the pig sector – what is Flavian’s view about the challenges that the pig sector has been facing?

00:35:37 The public need to have a reason to support UK farmers.

00:36:45 What could farmers do to engage more with the public?

00:39:00 7 million people have viewed some of Flavian’s TikTok videos. 

00:40:12 A message about our primary sponsor A Plan Rural.

00:40:44 Challenges in the industry – Flavian talks about the ‘lacklustre attitude’ towards change when it comes to diversity in agriculture. 

00:43:22 Flavian recalls some experiences and conversations about what people say and the words they use.

00:47:10 Ben and Flavian discuss ‘casual racism’. 

00:49:28 Flavian describes the time when he was asked to do something to ‘tick a box’. 

00:52:00 ‘Diversity has become a trigger word in farming’

00:52:35 The analogy of the roast dinner.

00:53:47 The murder of George Floyd and Black Lives Matter movement.

00:56:00 Flavian describes a difficult experience in Brighton.

01:00:41 ‘I look at this as motivation’.

01:02:44 Flavian’s message to the public.

01:03:22 Flavian’s message for farmers.

01:03:58 Flavian’s recommendations for podcasts.

01:05:42 Ben rounds up the show.  

Sign up to our newsletter

Be the first to hear about our podcast releases and rural insights by signing up for our newsletter.