Sponsored by: National Farm Research Unit

Tom Hawthorne

Flawborough Farms, Nottinghamshire

TOM Hawthorne originally started out creating a digital presence for his arable family farm to try and promote the business to a wider audience. Tom says being digitally interactive is not just about the business, it is about talking and sharing problems, especially in the arable sector, where technical questions can be asked and answered on social media platforms. Facebook stands at 5,544 likes and his 3,604 Twitter followers continue to grow. Tom is booked to exhibit at Lamma next year to sell his DVD #yearatflawboroughfarms. The farm operates three drones and the content is used across digital platforms. The improved presence of the business has helped land agents understand the structure of the farm and they are now approached to tender for land before other contractors in the area, which has boosted acreage as well as the contracting business. Harvest students are easier to acquire and the business has seen an influx of distributors and manufacturers wanting to trial a variety the latest products and services on-farm. They have also had a lot of interest from the public looking to invest or use their outbuildings as businesses. Moving forwards, Tom wants to revamp the website to make it more community based and more active for those in local areas and he is looking to introduce online weather stations and maps.