North Wyke Farm Platform

The North Wyke Farm Platform

Rothamsted Research

Researcher: Phil Murray

Funder: BBSRC

Rothamsted Research are exploring the biophysical processes that influence agricultural production, environmental benefits and pollution, with the help of the North Wyke Farm Platform.

Rothamsted Research, with strategic funding from BBSRC, runs the North Wyke Farm Platform near Exeter. The platform allows the detailed study of how agriculture interacts with the environment as well as providing a Research Hotel for agri-environmental research. The platform attracts researchers from different communities and disciplines to promote new ideas or tackle old problems in new ways.

The North Wyke Farm Platform is globally unique in that it can provide the research community access to a range of in situ state-of-the-art instrumentation in hydrologically isolated fields and farmlets to better address key issues in sustainable agriculture.

The underlying principle of the platform is to manage each of these farmlets differently and record the impact on water, air and soil.

As a National Capability, Rothamsted will provide the set of core data from across the Platform, making it available to all research users and collaborators.

The main ‘treatments’ on the platform are:

  • Best practice beef and sheep production as a ‘control’ and with typical management and inputs to maximise sustainable production.
  • Legume-based beef and sheep production where inorganic-N inputs are reduced and replaced as far as possible with biologically fixed-N via legumes.
  • Innovation farming using the latest techniques and technologies and be responsive to rapid changes and advances in technologies and methods.