Bethan Stagg

Bethan Stagg

Dr Bethan Stagg is Digital Education Officer at The Field Studies Council. Toolbox of Multi-species Swards for sustainable livestock production. Allotment grower. @BethanStagg on Twitter.

Location Devon


  • Oh dear, these are strange times, aren't they. Stay well and I hope you have someone that can drop off groceries for you, delivery services all seem to be booked up for the next 3 weeks @SallyMelling

  • @AngelaTaylor yes, the meat debate always gets quite heated, doesn't it. Make sure you have plenty of soya in your diet if following mainly plant-based, as choline intake can sometimes be an issue

  • Yes, I agree @AmeliaMoller

  • @SallyMelling @NettyWeijenberg @AmeliaMoller @Rebecca_ you might find this interesting, it is a project we are working with in Agritech

  • @JanMole we will raise them in insect farms in the UK, we would not use wild insects. Here is a project at Exeter researching insect production using food waste streams as a food source

    I am a big fan of traditional gazing systems and permaculture innovation but a big problem with many of these...

  • Thanks @felipeburgos, will add that to our list

  • @JanMole sorry to hear you are dissatisfied with the course. This video serves as an introduction to some issues in the fishing industry, for those people that do not yet have a background knowledge in the topic. The subsequent steps this week aim to cover some of these issues in more depth.

    There are arguments both for and against the rise in...

  • @SallyMelling Yes, very true

  • That is odd. I don't remember the summers being too bad either of those years. I lived at a farm at the time and seem to remember the polytunnel tomatoes being perfectly good each year!

  • That is a dramatic rise, isn't it.

  • According to AHDB it's to do with production seasons and our high demand for legs, I suppose it's the Sunday roast leg of lamb!

  • @LucasPosada this article is interesting too. Sad how many farming communities are locked into cash crops like sugar. Did you see Felipe's investigation above - he looked at oil palm in Colombia

  • @YelimLee This article throws some light on it too. I wonder what the affected farmers are doing now - what crops they are producing instead for example, or whether (as suggested in this article) it just means sadly that people are leaving the farming profession

  • @RobertMurray interesting - I had noticed that kiwis always used to come from NZ but now all the ones I see in the grocers are from Italy. I wonder what crops/land-use they have replaced in Italy?

  • I knew palm oil plantation has devastated Indonesia and Malaysia, saddening to hear it is an issue in Colombia too. Like you say, it is a completely unnecessary product

  • Glad you managed to get onto the website - interesting stuff, I never knew all that about apples @MohammedLutfiMohammedAli Mohammed

  • Hi Mohammed, did you try a variety of public browsers? Have you checked your virus software settings? What is the message that comes up when you try to enter faostat, I will ask our digital learning advisor to assist

  • Natural ecosystems are much more ecologically complex than agricultural systems. They have many more plant and tree species than the agricultural system and the species in them are native (originate from the local area), rather than being 'introduced' like agricultural species. That means they can support many more animal species, and other living things, than...

  • Yes, we do - this is a trailer for the film that Dan is developing

  • There can be environmental benefits but depends on the production system: if it is a high input/high energy system (eg UK beef or a lot of UK arable crops) then local/seasonal does not necessarily perform better than imported. But seasonal does usually have a lower energy consumption than unseasonal if comparing ‘like for like’

  • Thank you Kelechi, that is really interesting. I used to eat yams sometimes when I lived in London, but probably not prepared as tastily as you describe!

  • Interesting though, in Europe, it is young people that are changing the fastest: burger chains see ‘millenials’ as the biggest threat to their future growth!

  • Hi Tan, that’s right and hopefully the videos and activities that follow will give some answers to your last question. We think changing people’s food behaviour and the ‘food environment’ (which sadly too often now is full of unhealthy foods) are really important

  • Ah I see, interesting. The big challenge is the spoilage, though it depends which stage of the food system the waste is occurring at

  • I am not convinced sheep are so great for our our upland environments, uplands could actually sink a lot more carbon than that if they were not so overgrazed ( and if we grazed less upland areas the scrub/woodland could regenerate naturally, no need for planting). Don’t feel guilty about imported proteins, the GHG emissions for food transport is actually a...

  • Yes, I agree re aquaculture - there are actually some really sustainable models especially for shellfish and seaweed (less so for fish, it seems)

  • I know the feeling!

  • If you freeze the food fast and try to eat it within a couple of weeks the nutrient loss is pretty minimal

  • @AlisonNeedham 30% of our lamb and 70% of our beef is produced from lowland grasslands. Many lowland livestock farmers could become mixed farmers instead, by incorporating veg and arable crops into the rotation (this is working well here in some parts of Devon)

  • We are not saying that livestock production should halt but that it should be dramatically reduced. The majority of meat consumed globally is factory farmed, and that is what we need to address.
    I agree that some regions of the UK grow grass best but there is scope for many purely lowland livestock farmers to go mixed by incorporating some veg and arable...

  • The low proportions of eggs and butter in the diet is not because they are not healthy (eggs v good for us) but because they have a higher footprint than plant-based proteins and fats (ie pulses/legumes and nuts)

  • Agreed

  • This map is making me hungry, thank you for sharing your delicious dishes, everyone!

  • I love Korean food!

  • Partly because of habit and that high salt, fat etc are addictive I guess

  • Partly that people get so hooked on the taste of high fat/high salt/high sugar foods I guess

  • Hi Diana thanks for sharing what is happening in the Philippines. It’s true that tree crops like mango are much more resilient to climate shocks. The big challenge is having to wait a few years until the first crops come in

  • Hi Slavic we went for maize because it plays such a big part in the global food system - it certainly is a bit depressing!

  • Let us know if there is anything that doesn’t make sense - it’s a lot to absorb, it’s true!