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Victor Barry is a farmer whose idyllic Coastal Heritage Farm overlooks the sea in Cornwall. He says his Catholic faith has inspired him to combine Christian living with caring for the planet, and he has a passion for small-scale, organic, low-carbon footprint farming. Since taking over the farm in 1998 he has re-established old farm working practices, including the use of shire horses. Victor is part of an advisory body for the inauguration of certified courses to QCF standard for working horses and ponies on the land, together with small-scale organic farming methods. He is also a keen supporter of the Transition Network of community-led responses to the pressures of climate change and peak oil.
Is the Christian community so focused on other-worldly realities that its sees engagement with the earthly realities of food and agriculture as the domain of food agencies and supermarkets? The resounding answer is ‘No’. The National Justice and Peace Network (NJPN), a liaison body of the Catholic Church in England and Wales, is taking up the issue this summer when its annual conference in Derbyshire 16-18 July takes the theme: Our Daily Bread – Food Security, People and Planet.