What we do with your data


  1. Who we are
  2. What type of information we have
  3. Registering on the website/for newsletters
  4. Registering for a meeting or event (via Eventbrite)
  5. Becoming a field lab member
  6. Sensitive personal information
  7. How we get the information and why we have it
  8. Obtaining information
  9. Removing consent
  10. Re-gaining consent
  11. What we do with the information we have
  12. Main activities
  13. Data sharing
  14. How we store your information
  15. Your data protection rights
  16. How to complain
  17. Terms and conditions

1. Who we are

Innovative Farmers is a partnership programme, with Linking Environment And Farming, Innovation for Agriculture, Organic Research Centre and Waitrose, led and managed by the Soil Association (acting as the data controller). Also known as the Duchy Future Farming Programme created in 2012, Innovative Farmers as a brand, with a subscriber network and website, was launched in 2015.

Soil Association is a registered charity and certification business made of several entities, therefore this privacy policy is in addition to the Soil Association group’s privacy policy, which can be read in full here (www.soilassociation.org/privacy-policy/).

2. What type of information we have

3. Registering on the website/for newsletters

When you join/register on our website (www.innovativefarmers.org/join) or sign up to the newsletter, we process and store the following information:

  • Your name, email address, county and postcode (required)
  • Your address, telephone number, and some professional title information e.g. whether you are a farmer, student, veterinarian, or press, etc. (optional)

4. Registering for a meeting or event (via Eventbrite)

When you register for an event or field lab meeting using meeting service Eventbrite, we process and store the following information:

  • Your name, email address, telephone number, and postcode (required)
  • Your address, and some professional title information e.g. whether you are a farmer, student, veterinarian, or press, etc. (optional)
  • Dietary and access requirements
  • Option to join the newsletter

Information for the event/meeting is processed only for the purposes of the event described on registration, and all copies of data are deleted within 4 weeks of the event being held. Exceptions include if a person has agreed to sign up to the newsletter in which case the information provided is stored on our database as a new subscriber, as per 3, excluding any personal information regarding diet and access requirements unless specific additional permission is granted by you for us to store these data for future reference.

5. Becoming a field lab member

When you become a member of a field lab group, we store and process the following information on you:

  • Your name, email address, details on whether you are a trial host , telephone number (required)
  • Business name, professional details e.g. farmer, researcher etc., address (optional)
  • If applicable, farming system e.g. organic, non-organic, zero tillage, conservation agriculture, scale of farming business (optional)
  • Information submitted by you or your coordinator on how the field lab trial is progressing (required)
  • Business invoicing details if you are to be a recipient of a field lab research grant (where applicable)

6. Sensitive personal information

We do not request or store sensitive personal information such as:

religious beliefs, ethnicity, political preferences, marital status (unless a partner is also involved in the programme and it makes sense to reference this in the database), trade union identifies, any health, biometrics, or sexual orientation data.

7. How we get the information and why we have it

8.Obtaining information

Most of the personal information we process and store is provided to us directly by you (or via your coordinator or researcher if you are part of a field lab group, with your expressed permission) for one of the following reasons:

  • For monitoring and evaluation of your experiences, so we can continually improve the service and understand our impact
  • For staff in the programme team to contact you (as members of field lab groups), for the purposes of discussing field lab progress or to create informative external communications about the research happening in the network
  • To send regular news, updates on events and opportunities in the network to people who have opted into email communications

We never give your personal information to anyone, including our partners, without your explicit permission.

9. Removing consent

Under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the lawful bases we rely on for processing this information is your consent. You are able to remove your consent at any time.

You can consent to Innovative Farmers using your information (i.e. for tracking field lab progress) whilst at the same time removing your consent to receive newsletters and bulk mailings. You can do this by unsubscribing to our newsletter by using the link at the bottom of each email, or by contacting us directly at info@innovativefarmers.org, telephone 0117 987 4572.

10. Re-gaining consent

Our policy is to assume that we no longer have consent to contact you if your original consent is more than 3 years old. 

The exception is where we would consider you qualify as legitimate interest for us to maintain contact with you without requesting re-consent, as detailed below.

Legitimate interest

We would consider you legitimate interest where:

  • You are part of an active field lab, or expressed clear recent interest in a developing field lab group.
  • You are a partner to the programme or involved in any of our governance groups.

11. What we do with the information we have

12. Main activities

  • Part of your membership services include a monthly newsletter about the programme which you will have had the choice to opt into when you registered with us. You can opt out of these at any time by clicking the unsubscribe button at the bottom of all mailings.
  • Names of group members appear on the Innovate Farmers website group pages, either as first name only, or first name, surname and photograph when field lab members are logged in (and therefore viewable to members only).
  • Field lab participant information will also be shared with the group coordinator (and researcher if they need to regularly contact you about the trial or access your farm for data collection, etc.) helping to run and facilitate the group.
  • Members of field lab groups are collaborating and therefore the coordinator may ask if you would like to share your personal contact details with other members of the group for either email, mobile or WhatsApp (and other social networking) use to communicate whilst the trial progresses. Your information will be shared only with your explicit permission.

13. Data sharing

Data may be shared by our partners in the following circumstances:

  • Where projects are related and collaboration has been requested by a group, coordinator or researcher, we will contact you for permission to share your details with the related group, where appropriate.
  • Innovative Farmers may share your contact details with the LEAF (Linking Environment and Farming) field lab administrator where this is necessary for the purpose of group administration and support. This will only be the case for members of field labs that have been assigned support by LEAF and you will be made aware of this arrangement. The information will be used only for the purposes of administering and supporting the field lab group, and not entered into LEAF’s own contact databases or used for their independent marketing purposes. All personal data from the field lab group members will be deleted when LEAF are no longer involved in the field lab.
  • The Innovative Farmers programme will share your contact details with our independent evaluation partners, the Countryside and Communities Research Institute (CCRI), for the sole purpose of external evaluation of Innovative Farmers. Contact information used in evaluation is coded and anonymised by CCRI during analyses and removed from their system at a maximum 6 months after the evaluation is complete and the final report accepted.

14. How we store your information

Your information is securely stored on our password protected CRM database, held on servers in Bristol, UK.

We will only keep your personal information for as long as necessary to fulfil the purposes we collected it for, including for the purposes of satisfying any legal, accounting, or reporting requirements as part of the Innovative Farmers programme.

To determine the appropriate retention period for personal information, we consider the amount, nature, and sensitivity of the personal information, the potential risk of harm from unauthorised use or disclosure of your personal information, the purposes for which we process your personal information and whether we can achieve those purposes through other means, and the applicable legal requirements.

In many cases, we will keep your personal information for up to six years after the programme has ceased.

15. Your data protection rights

Under data protection law, you have rights including:

Your right of access - You have the right to ask us for copies of your personal information.

Your right to rectification - You have the right to ask us to rectify information you think is inaccurate. You also have the right to ask us to complete information you think is incomplete.

Your right to erasure - You have the right to ask us to erase your personal information in certain circumstances.

Your right to restriction of processing - You have the right to ask us to restrict the processing of your information in certain circumstances.

Your right to object to processing - You have the the right to object to the processing of your personal data in certain circumstances.

Your right to data portability - You have the right to ask that we transfer the information you gave us to another organisation, or to you, in certain circumstances.

You are not required to pay any charge for exercising your rights. If you make a request, we have one month to respond to you.

Please contact us at info@innovativefarmers.org or telephone 0117 987 4572 if you wish to make a request.

16. How to complain

You can complain to the ICO if you are unhappy with how we have used your data or handled your requests for information.

The ICO’s address:

Information Commissioner’s Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane

Helpline number: 0303 123 1113



17. Terms and Conditions


This agreement commences once you have indicated your acceptance in the Declaration section of the web sign up at which point a contract will come into existence between you and us.

This agreement cannot be transferred to anyone else.


Unless otherwise agreed, all research findings, learning and know-how arising through Innovative Farmers is to be shared openly through the network, primarily through the web portal.

By contrast, the rights to any patentable invention arising through a group of Innovative Farmers are assumed to belong equally to the Co-ordinator(s), researcher(s) and other members of the group. In the exceptional case that the Co-ordinator expects this, they should agree clear terms of reference for the group with the members and with the Partnership.


When participating in the network online or face to face you agree to treat others with respect. You may not use the web portal or meetings of Innovative Farmers to market goods or services to other members.

There may be occasions where we have to cancel a meeting or event. We will do our best to let you know of such cancellations in advance of them taking place, unless the problem is urgent or an emergency.

We will not be liable or responsible for any failure to perform, or delay in performance of, any of our obligations under these terms that is caused by any event that is outside of our reasonable control.

We will not be liable or responsible for outstanding monies paid to a Group Coordinator. Group Coordination is arranged directly with the Coordinator and not with Innovative Farmers.

As a consumer, you have legal rights in relation to any services that are not carried out with reasonable skill and care. Advice about your legal rights is available from your local Citizens' Advice Bureau or Trading Standards office. Nothing in these terms will affect these legal rights.

This agreement is governed by English Law.


You may terminate your membership at any point by contacting us by telephone, informing us of your desire to terminate your membership.. 

We may terminate this agreement with immediate effect on notifying you if, in our sole opinion, you have breached the terms of this agreement.


Innovative Farmers is managed by the Soil Association, a charity registered in England, Scotland and Wales. Our charity registration number in England and Wales is 206862and our charity registration number in Scotland is SC039168. Our registered office is at Soil Association, South Plaza, Marlborough Street, Bristol, BS1 3NX. Our registered VAT number is 701 0166 01.

If you have any questions or if you have any complaints, please contact us. You can contact us by telephoning our customer service team at 0117 9874572  or by e-mailing us at info@innovativefarmers.org.

If you wish to contact us in writing, or if any clause in these terms requires you to give us notice in writing you can send this to us by e-mail to Innovative Farmers at info@innovativefarmers.org. We will confirm receipt of this by contacting you by email.

These terms and conditions are as updated on 29 May 2018

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© Soil Association 2020. Charity registered in England and Wales no 206862, in Scotland no SC039168. Terms