IFAJ eCongress Week

A celebration of the annual congress . . . online

Monday, 22 June 22 to Friday, 26 June 2020

IFAJ members from around the world are invited to join any or all of the sessions 


22 June at 14h00-15h30 GMT

Speaker panel: Per Henrik Hansen, Richmond Frimpong, and Jane Craigie

Freedom to express ourselves is just as important for journalists working in the sphere of agriculture and agribusiness as for any other journalists. Most of us have experienced pressure, for example from companies to write “something nice” about agriculture. What can we do in the IFAJ to support our members when they become victims of pressure from companies, and sometimes even publishers? We also have had cases in which members of IFAJ have been arrested, tortured and jailed because they reported about market prices or growing season forecasts for farmers. They work in countries where governments cannot tolerate reports jeopardising their reputation and their power. How can we support our members in such regions? How can we cooperate with other associations to promote their independence?

Jane Craigie

Jane is a graduate of The Institute of Agricultural Management in Great Britain and Scottish Enterprise Rural Leadership Programmes, is a Windsor Leadership Alumna and a Waitangi Scholar. She lives on a smallholding in the north east of Scotland, and was brought up in Cyprus, India and Turkey. She produces a podcast with her father called The Spy Who Raised Me.

She is a board member for Lantra and a Professional Agriculturalist (P.Agric) and RingLink Scotland. Jane is also a director and co-founder of the Rural Youth Project, an international grassroots movement for positive change to empower young people to develop their leadership, enterprise & activism skills. The goal is to play an integral part in making rural places attractive and viable for young people to build their lives and their futures there. Jane is running her own marketing business Jane Craigie Marketing Ltd. and has more than 25 years’ experience in marketing and communicating within the agri-food sector. Jane is also a member of the executive committee of the IFAJ and the council of the British Guild of Agricultural Journalists and has joined the OCED Rural Innovation Expert Panel. She has seen a great part of the world and is familiar with challenges of journalists and communicators on a global level. She is the one who has been coordinating the work of the IFAJ Vision 2025 committee but first of all Jane is known for inspiring people. A conversation with Jane will make you feel like a different person.

Richmond Frimpong

Richmond is the Deputy News Editor and Executive Producer at Promise Broadcasting Ltd (Oyerepa 100.7 FM in Kumasi). He is the President of Ghana Agricultural and Rural Development Journalists Association(GARDJA) and the Ghanian representative to the executive committee of the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists. In 2016, he was one of ten participants in the IFAJ- Alltech Young Leaders program held in Bonn, Germany at the IFAJ annual congress.

Per Henrik Hansen

Per Henrik is an award-winning freelance agri-food journalist based in Denmark. He is a graduate from the Danish School of Journalism and has also earned a diploma in communication and information journalism. He is a member of the board of directors of the Danish Food and Agricultural Journalists and is Denmark’s representative on the executive committee for the International Federation of Agricultural Journalists (IFAJ).

23 June at 09h00-10h30 GMT

Speaker: Theo de Jager, President, World Farmers Organization (WFO)

The arrival of the coronavirus has already impacted how agricultural journalists and communicators cover stories and events. At the same time, farmers are as dependent as ever on receiving timely, accurate and insightful news and information. Given that the presence of COVID-19 will continue to affect how journalists and communicators do their jobs into the future, especially the ability to travel out to farms and agri-food sites, what are the important issues that farmers still need covered and how can they work with agricultural journalists and communicators to facilitate access and coverage. 


Theo de Jager is a timber and subtropical fruit farmer in Tzaneen, Limpopo (South Africa) and former president of the South African and Pan-African farmers’ associations.

24 June at 14h00-15h30 GMT

Speaker: John Hansen, chairperson of the Danish Association for Investigative Journalism.

Wikileaks, Luxleaks, Panama Papers. The recent years have showed several cases of journalistic cooperation across borders. But how are these big projects coordinated and handled between the participating journalists? And can we in agricultural journalism gain anything from working across borders when we cover the big ag. companies, the European agriculture policy, tests for tractors, farming practice or something completely else?

The Danish journalist John Hansen, who writes for the national newspaper Politiken, has a lot of experience in international cooperation; inter alia he has been involved in the Luxleak and PanamaPapers projects. He will share some important do’s and don’t’s and look at ways on what agricultural journalists can work on together and how.

25 June at 09h00-11h30 GMT

IFAJ’s first online annual meeting, to be conducted in English with simultaneous translation into French and Spanish.

Agricultural journalists and communicators from around the world can participate as observers along with the official delegates from 53 IFAJ countries. There will be reports from the Presidium, the Vision 2025 committee and on the IFAJ Foundation. There will be approval of new member applications from Zambia and Sierre Leone, information on future IFAJ congresses and presentations from the nominees running for election to one of four positions on the IFAJ Presidium.

26 June at 14h00-15h30 GMT

The Danish guild of agri-food journalists was one of the many organizations around the world that had to take the hard decision to cancel or postpone events, in particular annual gatherings such as the 2020 IFAJ congress. A lot of effort by the volunteer crew in Denmark has been ‘frozen’ until the event can be re-organized for 2021, so in the meantime an online gathering will have to do. In the spirit of the annual congress, a “Toast to Denmark” will be held with a presentation by Asger Christensen, a farmer and Member of the European Parliament, on Danish agriculture, a sneak peek at the Denmark 2021 program, and the announcement of the Star Prize contest winners. 



Asger Christensen is dairy farmer with 650 milk cows near Tarm, Denmark. He is also a Member of the European Parliament as part of the parliamentary group Renew Europe and national party affiliation is with Venstre. He serves on the Committee on Agriculture and Rural Development and is noted for having cycled from Denmark to Brussels to take up his position MEP in 2019.