Change programme and strategy 2021–2026

Change at a glance

Strategy at a glance

Focus on
cost savings

Improving performance,
and costs

levy collection

Flying the flag for British produce at home and overseas

5-year ballot

Evidence and data at the heart of what we do

Our programme for change

We are embarking on major change at AHDB to improve value for levy payers.

Welcome to the new AHDB strategy, which outlines our plans for the next five years.

New international trading arrangements, leaving the EU, environmental and sustainability concerns, changes to UK farm and land policy, and significant shifts in consumer behaviour will impact us all. AHDB is committed to change to better support you and your business to meet these challenges.

We’re listening

We recognise there are genuine differences between the challenges facing sectors and even within sectors. Levy payers’ requirements for research, marketing, exports or analysis are not the same. One size does not fit all and levies must be set to reflect the value provided. Our AHDB change programme is well under way, and we are committed to reporting back on how we are doing on a regular basis.

Read Chair Nicholas Saphir's full statement

Sectors will drive our work

Around half of all levy payers pay more than one sector levy. One of the advantages of AHDB as a single organisation is the opportunity it provides through cross sector programmes to share best practice, drive more impact on farm and achieve economies of scale.

Each AHDB sector will continue to determine how their money is spent to meet its needs. This means there will be a tailored approach for each sector, as set out in the plans included in this document.

Where there are AHDB programmes covering more than one sector – such as the environment, soils or animal welfare – the need for that work will be discussed with each sector before it is funded. Moving forward, some cross sector projects will potentially include funding from non-levy sources.

Read information about your sector

Download a copy of the full strategy proposal

Change Programme and Strategy 2021-2026 (PDF)

We are focused on change

Earlier this year AHDB outlined its Five Commitments to levy payers in response to the Request for Views published by Defra in Spring 2020. This marked the start of a programme of reform to ensure an effective and efficient organisation fit to meet evolving levy payer needs.

Explore our five commitments to levy payers

Key areas of work

How will we enable British farmers, growers and their supply chains to succeed in a rapidly changing world?

Our key areas of work will be:

  • Bringing data, insight and analysis together in an easy-to-use format to help farmers, growers and supply chains make better business decisions
  • Helping farming and growing businesses reduce their environmental footprint to meet future policy and consumer needs
  • Investing in targeted research to tackle current and future pests, weeds and diseases
  • Helping levy payers, industry and researchers share technical information and best practice through our Farm Excellence Network and skills development
  • Unlocking and making the most of export opportunities to grow markets for British produce
  • Promoting our industry and building the reputation of its products at home and overseas

Our approach

Working with others

We will seek to work with others where there are aligned common goals around research, knowledge exchange, skills and marketing.

This builds on our successful partnerships with organisations such as the British Nutrition Foundation in our education work, Dairy UK in our marketing programmes, and the Betty Lawes Foundation with our Strategic Dairy Farm programme.

Working in this way helps AHDB and its partners achieve greater impact and value for money. We will also work closely with governments in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland in delivering new farm support packages and opening export markets. Where appropriate, therefore, we will seek co-funding from Government and others.

How we will measure success

Across the lifetime of AHDB’s strategy, two headline measures will inform if we are on the right track:

  • We want to see more levy payers using our services because they find them helpful and beneficial
  • We will have 70% using our products, tools and services by 2026

Looking ahead

Over the next five years, British farming and growing is facing a number of common challenges and opportunities across all sectors. 

See our full list of challenges and opportunities