Category Archives: Uncategorized

Farm Product Branding

Cheese for sale in Devizes market, Wiltshire. So why do people therE buy Lancashire chees, rather than just “cheese”?

Developing a brand can generate not just loyalty but higher margins.. So, how can a farmer go about branding?  Well, his or her own name is a start.  The problem there is that it takes a long time to get the word known and usually costs significant resource, too.  One step easier is to use the farm name, but again, time and resource are involved in creating memorable images in enough individual minds is a problem.  One step easier is to use a place name that is easily identified.  One successful example of this is cheeses; Cheddar, Wensleydale, Cheshire and many more.  Choosing a name which is easily identified adds familiarity and that is part of developing and recognising trust.

Bill Butterworth, Land Research Ltd, 1 May 2017

Farming; Adding Safety as Value



Bread from Morrisons. Yes, the UK does produce the safest food in the world. Here, the rules are more sophisticated and better policed than anywhere else.

The whole of agricultural policy following two world wars, was food security and “food” was identified as farm crops as harvested. . While we forget that lesson at our peril, we now have to think in terms of Adding Value.  Doing that by taking a harvested crop (such as vegetables) and processing and packaging them is certainly a step in the right direction.  However, there is another way of looking at Adding Value and that is at an industry level for the national economy. One of the most important ways we can do that is to accept, co-operate with and seek to influence and re-direct regulation and regulators to deliver what is, and should be recognised as already the case, the safest food in the world.

Bill Butterworth, Land Research Ltd.,  26 April 2017

Click here for Survival

Farming in the UK Economy

When will the politicians see that we cannot carry on building on farm land and import everything?

A recent report in the Independent newspaper saw the loss of 200,000 ha of lard out of farming in the last 6 years, to make way for alternative use.  Forests, farmland and wetlands are being cleared to make way for new housing, mineral extraction, golf courses and other non-farm use.  Much of that was good land and that means an equivalent loss of production of, say, wheat in one year of over 30,000 tonnes or a value of  £4 to 5 million per annum.  Which we will now import.  We produce the safest food in the world and we are sliding into importing everything. Are our elected representatives, the civil service and planners completely insane?  Please can we plan for a few years ahead beyond the next election or step in their index-linked pensions?

Bill Butterworth, Land Research Ltd  20 April 2017

Trump and The Art of The Deal

Nearly as impressive as “The Art of the Deal”.

Please would President Trump and every Member of both houses of the USA government read this.  There is money in it for the USA economy and all its people.

Land Research Ltd   14 March 2017


Welcome to Followers and Visitors from We shall be posting items here on shale gas, mainly Sundays and sustainable land management on Wednesdays.

For those who have visited this site in the past, but not Safe Shale, and are interested in shale gas exploration and production in the UK, you might like to see past blog entries at

Syria, USA, Russia and oil pipelines.



What is it all about? “Energy security” is political speak for greed. and fear.

For more on this, see

Bill Butterworth, Land Research Ltd, 26 October 2016

Frost mold and energy in farming



Frost on set up furrows on a clay cap on the crown of the Marlborough Downs above Devizes in Wiltshire.

There was a time when farmers were very conscious of using a frost mold to do their winter cultivations for free.  Now, too often, a power harrow is used to “force a tilth” in a rush in August/September to get the next autumn sown crop in. With the switch autumn cropping has come a reliance on power input.  However, not with all farmers.  Some have long switched to reduced cultivations, some to one pass only.  In the USA, over half of all crops are put in with “zero till”.

At present, diesel prices are low.  The deal this week with Iran (and its nuclear leverage) will allow their oil onto the global market in much larger quantities.  That will help keep the price of diesel down.

Despite that breathing space, it may be as well to remember that experience on putting regular dressings of compost made from “wastes” onto heavy land soils can reduce power inputs by over 60 %. That is sustainability.

Bill Butterworth   20 January 2016