Helping rural businesses see what does and does not work

A lifetime's experience

William’s methods are based on his lifetime’s experience of seeing what works and, importantly, does not work, in agricultural and rural businesses. He has developed a holistic approach to agricultural production, the land on which it takes place, its environment, the people who work on it and the wider economic picture. He helps businesses examine all these aspects – and more – to enable them to make good decisions which take account of all factors relevant to a business’s continued success.

In addition to his vast experience of all types of farm business across the world, William has undertaken extensive training with The Savory Institute and nRhythm, whose methods he practises.

The current model of food production is unsustainable at many levels.

Farmers have become stuck on a spiral of excessive tillage and toxic chemistry destroying soil, profitability, health and rural communities; by working in harmony with nature to address these issues farming not only becomes more profitable and enjoyable, it also has a positive impact on the health of our planet. The current food supply network is not resilient, with the constituent parts in competition for the decreasing profits as the supermarkets drive prices down; a more holistic approach to food will not only improve security of supplies and the wellbeing of everyone working in the industry but also the health of everyone eating that food.

William’s approach to creating an abundant countryside is to help people work with nature to produce good food, fibre, wood and energy profitably and at the same time regenerate nature – and he considers people to be part of nature. He is the first to admit this is not easy, but by managing holistically it has been proven to be possible on every farm where it has been implemented around the world.

"To regenerate a farm business and its people and ecosystems it must be managed holistically; to use some ‘regenerative practices’ without a holistic perspective and appropriate monitoring will just prolong the problems we face. Allan Savory often reminds us management can no more be partly holistic than someone can be partly pregnant."

William Houstoun

Savory Logo

The Savory Institute was established to help regenerate the world’s grasslands and their inhabitants’ livelihoods. Fundamental to their work is the proof that the well-managed grazing of livestock can restore land, help mitigate against climate change, secure food and water supplies and alleviate poverty.

Alan Savory set up the Institute following his 1960s breakthrough in understanding what was causing the degradation and desertification of the world’s grassland ecosystems. Over the next 20 years he worked with people and land across four continents to develop a form of holistic management which has reversed desertification and restored environmentally and economically sustainable businesses and ecosystems at numerous sites.

His approach is now disseminated through 35 hubs across the world with the aim of regenerating 1,000,000,000 ha of grassland through holistic management.

nRhythm Logo

nRhythm help design, operate and resource organisations, networks and communities to help them address complex environmental and social issues.

Their combined background includes management consulting, executive coaching, project management, sales, business development and fundraising in commercial and non-profit organisations including agriculture, biology and technology.

They prioritise the personal growth and health of all staff; decentralised decision-making; flexible and responsive organisations; a recognition of the deep interdependence of any organisation with its staff, clients, suppliers, partners and even competitors.

They recognise that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts and create conditions for abundance and resilience for companies and all those who work for them.