Step 1. Complete the online application form after reading and agreeing to the Code of Conduct for members and submission of all required information.
Step 2. Within one month of application if selected you will be invited to attend an interview with the Groundswell Selection Committee at Weston Park Farms, Weston. The committee will consist of two farmer members and at least one industry expert experienced in the field of specialism that advice offered is being practiced. You will be asked to bring evidence of all professional qualifications and evidence of suitable Indemnity Insurance.
Step 3. The committee’s decision is final, and you will be notified within one week of the formal interview.
Step 4. The above process also applies for anyone wishing to become a Groundswell approved Demonstration Farm or Groundswell technical Farm Manager Adviser.
Step 5. Once approved you must abide by the conditions of membership which are as follows;
1. “GACS” shall mean the Groundswell Agronomy and Consultancy Service.
2. Any member of the GACS who a member of another professional organisation is also and has been found guilty by that organisation of a breach of its Code of Conduct, then such a breach shall amount to a breach of the Code of Conduct of the GACS.
3. Members of the GACS must maintain a high standard of professional practice, conduct and integrity and abstain from any behaviour which may tend to discredit the profession and/or GASC of which they are a member.
4. Each member will advise to the best of his/her ability on all aspects of crop husbandry and encourage the safe and proper use, application, storage and disposal of crop protection and nutritional advice with particular regard to operators, consumers, the environment and to the aims and intentions of all current legislation and statutory codes of practice.
5. No GACS member shall:
i. Unless a full disclosure has been made to the client and both parties have agreed in writing, be employed by or have any financial relationship with any individual, firm or company which shall be likely to prejudice the impartiality of his/her advice to clients, nor shall they be engaged in any trade profession or occupation which may become prejudicial as aforesaid.
ii. Be in any way connected with or have any relationship with any individual, firm or company if such connection or relationship might be or become prejudicial to or inconsistent with his/her duty to any of his/her clients without making a full disclosure to that client.
iii. Engage in any work outside the sphere of his/her competence.
iv. Seek to obtain instructions from a client in a manner considered to be unprofessional.
v. Make any charge for his/her services in a manner considered to be unprofessional.
6. Subject to complying with the foregoing Clauses any member may engage in farming or other occupation on his/her own account or in partnership or in such other manner as he/she shall think fit.
7. It is a condition of GACS membership that all members hold adequate professional indemnity insurance.
8. Each GACS member shall ensure that his/her professional development is always kept up to date.
A Groundswell Adviser also agrees to the following;
1. Pay an annual membership fee of £1,500 (discounted to £500 for anyone joining in the first year only).
2. Agree to attend the Groundswell Conference in its interiority and be available to staff the Groundswell Agronomy stand on a roto with other advisers.
3. Host a minimum of one regional half or one day technical event tailored to the specific region they reside in. Either individually or in collaboration with other advisers in that region.
4. At all events held or attended erect a pop banner promoting the Groundswell Agronomy Service. Where they are attending an event with the organiser’s permission.
5. Always maintain suitable indemnity insurance to an appropriate value for the advice being given.
6. Each member would be expected to maintain a record of attendance to any technical meetings or conferences to demonstrate continual personal development relevant to the industry they are operating in.
7. The relationship between the Adviser and Client is exclusive to them and Groundswell accept no liability for any professional advice given. Groundswell strongly advises each adviser to seek appropriate legal advice before accepting any form of consultancy work.
8. Groundswell Agronomy Ltd agrees to provide each adviser with the following annual service on receipt of the appropriate subscription fee;
9. Maintain the Groundswell Agronomy Service website with full details of all members nationally including an up to date Bio, plus a full list of services offered and links to each adviser’s individual website and public social media accounts. It’s is the responsibility of the adviser to notify Groundswell Ltd of any changes they make to keep information relevant and current.
10. Actively promote the Groundswell Agronomy and Consultancy Service through all media channels throughout the year.
11. Provide an administration function to all members efficiently processing direct enquiries received and forwarding information of advisers in their region or for the area of interest within 24hrs of receiving an enquiry (excluding public holidays when an enquiry will be forwarded within the next working day). Interested parties will be directed impartially to the full current list of advisers available at the time of enquiry.
12. Provide suitable Groundswell Agronomy marketing material. Each adviser will receive two pop up banners to be used when hosting or attending events.
13. For all meetings hosted by Advisers, Groundswell Ltd will set up and run event administration as notified by members through Eventbrite.
14. Provide a prominent stand at each Groundswell Show and Conference specifically for Groundswell Advisers. Advisers are also encouraged to submit ideas for subjects they may wish to present at the show as well as volunteering to assist with stewarding duties. Any final decision on show content is at the discretion of the Show organisers.
15. Maintain a social media presence and periodic press releases promoting the advisers and the advice service. When notified by the adviser profile advisers’ news or achievements relevant to the service.
16. Access to a full benchmarking service facilitated by Gary Markham, Land Family Business is available to all Advisers at cost. Advisers will be required to carry out on farm data capture as per the service agreed with each individual client.
Use the interactive map below to see the Groundswell Advisor Regions: