Farming News - Training scheme could add £600k to farm incomes

Training scheme could add £600k to farm incomes

21 May 2019
Frontdesk / Finance

Farmers who have now completed AHDB’s 2017 management training scheme identified combined savings to their businesses in excess of £600,000*.

Workshops will help farms develop a business plan

Applications for 2019’s Professional Manager Development Scheme (PMDS) have now opened, with the first session starting in September.  

Designed to develop skills of those who manage staff, the course enables farmers and growers to apply business intelligence from other sectors, improve communication and understanding, to raise the level of professionalism in their business. 

AHDB levy payers gain a £3,000 discount on the Institute of Leadership Management (ILM) qualification run by training specialists, Cedar Associates.

Tess Howe, Senior Skills Manager at AHDB said: “Developing your management skills should be no different to getting your farm business in shape; both deliver tangible benefits to support the longevity and sustainability of your business.”

There are ten sessions during the fourteen-month programme, consisting of an evening discussion followed by a day of management training. 

Having completed the training course in 2019, 29 year old Charlotte Hudson of Hugh Lowe Farms, said: “Skills development is important across the whole of agriculture – before there was little development and skills were self-taught, or passed on by older generations. 

“Having courses to go on gives you confidence as a younger member of staff, to perform in your role while being aware of the potential implications of your actions.  It also gives you confidence in yourself to help others grow their skills too.

“I now see myself working towards a five-year plan.  I started out as a new entrant in the industry, having found myself put down from not having enough experience, not having done this or that. This course has been an excellent starting point in gaining that experience and jump-starting my career further, I’d now like to go down the business development or business management route. Right now, the more I can learn and do, the better.”

Application forms must be submitted by 24 June 2019, with more information available on

Once received, an interview panel will review applications and interviews will take place on 10 July 2019. The panel is looking for individuals who are already in a role with responsibilities and have the ability to implement change where required.  Participants should have the support of their employer before applying.

AHDB levy payers are eligible for a discount to attend the course, which costs £950 plus VAT and includes registration, tutor and hotel fees. Non-levy payers can apply but will be subject to the full £3,950 plus VAT cost.

For more information on work to develop skills in farming and growing, visit