Covering arable, horticultural, perennial and protected crop production systems and ruminant and monogastric livestock systems in northern and southern Europe.

Background

Expanding global demand for foods from organic (biological or ecological) and other ‘low input’ systems is increasing the need for skilled professionals in primary production and associated processing, trading/retailing and certification/quality assurance industries.

What is the MSc about?

MSc Students learning about compost with Dr Julia Cooper, 2015. Photo Credit: Jessica Byam

The course provides specialist knowledge and skills required for organic farming and food production systems via a combination of lectures, field courses, seminars, practical classes and research projects.
Compulsory modules will cover:

  • History and principles of ecological and ‘low input’ farming and food production
  • Standards and quality assurance systems
  • Soil fertility management, biology and nutrient dynamics
  • Livestock husbandry, health management and breeding for ecological and ‘low input’ systems
  • Crop husbandry, health management and breeding for ecological and ‘low input’ systems
  • Ecological perennial crop production systems in the Mediterranean
  • Greenhouse crop management practices in organic and sustainable farming and food production systems.

Optional modules will allow specializations in a range of areas such as: environmental and soil science, medicinal plants, tropical animal production, rural resources, experimental design/statistics and economics.

Where and how will it be delivered?

The programme will be delivered in English at Newcastle University, UK. Many practical sessions and seminars will be delivered at the University’s Nafferton Experimental Farm where a range of unique long term agronomic experiments are available for MSc projects.
In May a 10 day field course will take place as part of the Mediterranean perennial crop production systems a in Crete, Greece, organised in collaboration with ecological farming experts from the Hellenic Agricultural Organisation – Demeter.

Why this course?

To optimize employment prospects the course will:

  • provide networking opportunities with industry, NGOs and other academic institutions
  • be delivered at two sites (UK and Crete) providing knowledge and skills in both northern and southern European production
  • be supported by leading Quality Assurance and Certification bodies/companies

Need further information?

Please visit the Newcastle University website for more about applying to this programme:
http://www.ncl.ac.uk/postgraduate/courses/degrees/organic-farming-food-production-systems-msc/#profile.