Over 160 smallholders from across the county flocked to a new event at Kingston Maurward to showcase different elements of smallholding, and offer expert advice. The event – held in conjunction with Trading Standards, Synergy Farm Vets and Mole Valley Country Stores – aimed primarily to raise awareness of the varied legislation required for smallholders.
Held at Stinsford Farm – the College’s own working farm – guests were given demonstrations and talks about cows, pigs, sheep and poultry; offered advice about legislation and how to avoid becoming a victim of rural crime.
Clare Davison, said: “With over 1700 smallholders in Dorset the success of this event has shown that there is a genuine desire to find out more about their responsibilities and the requirements of Trading Standards. We realise the importance of this and will endeavour to put on more events to make this information as accessible to as many smallholders as we can.”
Neil Martin from Trading Standards said: “We wanted to be able to get across the important rules and regulations that apply to all smallholders; whether people own one pig or a herd of 800 breeding sows, the same rules apply. However where farmers would be aware of the legislation as it’s their business, many smallholders may not be.
“Trading Standards want to help smallholders – we’d like to be able to go out and visit individuals, but due to the large numbers it’s virtually impossible. That’s why an event like this is so important – during the event over fifty people came to speak to us about legislation, and we’ve received very positive feedback about our advice. We will be looking to run future events and courses with the College to address this demand.”
For information about legislation for smallholders search online for Dorset Trading Standards or go to Dorsetforyou.com