An ambitious UK grain and feed trade charity bike ride this summer aims to raise at least £100,000 for the Farm Community Network (FCN).
FCN, formerly the Farm Crisis Network, is a voluntary organisation and charity that supports farmers and families within the farming community through difficult times. Its network of over 400 volunteers help those working in rural communities, often in isolated circumstances, deal with a variety of issues, including financial difficulty, animal disease, mental health and family disputes to find a positive way through their problems - for as long as it is needed.
The organisers believe it is time for the agricultural supply trade to act in a co-ordinated way to show unequivocal support for the farming industry - providing vital and practical support for many in the farming industry while demonstrate the essential bond between farmers and their suppliers.
The GAFT Cycle Relay, the brainchild of a group of Grain and Corn Trade Associations, is a major national event designed to raise the profile of FCN and the work it does. They are seeking the active involvement of as many supply trade businesses as possible to raise a substantial sum for FCN.
The relay will be a marathon 3,700 cycle tour linking many of the UK’s principal mills, ports, grain and feed sites over six weeks.. It will start in London after the GAFTA Dinner on Tuesday June 19th, with the DEFRA Secretary of State starting the first team from outside the Houses of Parliament. The final route of the relay is still being finalised but will take in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, with a finish towards the end of July at Stoneleigh Park.
The event will be strongly branded and it is intended to engage with as many people as possible such as young farmer’s organisations, livestock markets and agricultural shows. The local, regional and national PR opportunities surrounding the event will be maximised, which will benefit participating businesses, working with the press and on social media.
At this stage, the organisers are seeking pledges of willingness to participate in this large undertaking, ideally by provide riders for local legs of the relay, but also any support that can be given.