Listen to latest arable industry thinking at CropTec Show seminars
This year’s CropTec Show seminars will see 16 industry specialists cover four key areas relating to crop protection, breeding, establishment and nutrition during the two-day event, offering visitors advice on adapting to change and embracing the future.
Sponsored by Nufarm
Times: Day 1 - 1.30pm-2.40pm, Day 2 - 3.20pm-4.30pm
Session chairperson: Emma Hamer, senior plant health adviser, NFU
Almost two-thirds of actives used in UK agriculture have been lost since the 1990s, and growers are coming under increasing pressure to produce more food using fewer chemicals, for both the environment’s sake and for their pockets.
Session chairperson Emma Hamer says: “Having a toolbox of effective solutions to crop protection problems is our goal so that pests, weeds and diseases can be managed. By listening to the speakers in this session, the audience can stay on the front foot and keep up to date on current research being carried out in this area.”
- Managing with fewer pesticides: The loss of agchems like chlorothalonil will have a severe impact on disease and resistance management. Find out why growing varieties with high disease resistance ratings will become increasingly important for both disease control and profitability.
Fiona Burnett, head of Connect for Impact and chair of the Fungicide Resistance Group
- Profiting from early disease detection: Crop walking via satellites and drones is presenting farmers with more accurate data on the state of their crops at all growth stages. Hear an agronomist’s perspective on how agtech can boost yields and profitability, while safeguarding the environment.
Matt Kettlewell, agronomist, Hummingbird
- Keeping up with changing herbicide dynamics: With grass-weeds often hogging the spot light, broad-leaved weed dynamics are shifting and growers need to keep on top of the challenge.
Sarah Cook, weed scientist and senior research consultant, ADAS.
Sponsored by BASF
Times: Day One 9.30am-10.40am
Day Two 1.30pm-2.40pm
Session Chair: Russell McKenzie, Cambridgeshire farmer and AHDB Cereals and Oilseeds board member
Plant genetics are our most valuable tool for tackling pests and disease, weather uncertainties and overcoming yield plateaus.
Varieties with high levels of resistance will not only enhance profitability but reduce the need for chemical inputs and agriculture’s impact on the environment. Delegates will hear how science and genetics can help carry the UK’s arable industry forward in uncertain times.
- Winning ways with wheat lies in its genes: Hear how the Defra-funded Wheat Genetic Improvement Network is researching how to reduce unit costs of production while offering environmental benefits through more sustainable yields and improved crop resistance and nitrogen use efficiency.
Speaker: Kim Hammond-Kosack, research leader wheat pathogenomics and deputy head, Department of Biointeractions and Crop Protection, Rothamsted Research.
- Breeding resilience into oilseed rape: With oilseed rape area set to further drop, visitors can get a ‘peek under the hood’ of the crop, to find out why yields can be so variable, and how climate change is actually helping oilseed rape growers.
Speaker: Steven Penfield, John Innes Centre
- Variety selection in uncertain times: New varieties are only useful to the grower if they have a market. Current uncertainty means it is all the more important that choice of combinable crops meets market demands.
Speaker: Cecilia Pryce, head of compliance, research and shipping, Openfield
Sponsored by Horsch
Times: Day One – 3.20pm-4.30pm
Day Two – 9.30am-10.40am
Session chairman: Will Gemmill, chairman, regional executive and head of farming, Strutt & Parker.
Cost-effective crop establishment, a key aspect of this seminar, is critical to farmers’ future profits, says session chairman Will Gemmill.
“How farmers manage their soils and find more innovative ways of keeping them healthy whilst capturing carbon emissions will be critical in the future.
“In addition, reducing chemical solutions coupled with a desire to continue making efficiencies on fixed costs means finding innovative solutions to soil management becomes ever more important.”
- Profiting from tough decisions – making every hectare count: Following the suspension of Parliament, the Agriculture Bill of 2018, which sets out to phase out direct payments over the next nine years, will have to begin its passage through Parliament again. That delay may be welcome, but its sentiments remain. Namely, the proposal to link any future support to improvements in soil health, air and water quality, alongside other measures to help reduce the impact of climate change. The question for farmers is how should they challenge, manage and adapt to those vague proposals? For many could mean some tough decisions, as our experienced farmer explains.
Speaker: Andrew Pitts, Northants farmer and consultant
- Rooting for profit provided by cover crops: Cover crops have an important role to play in maintaining healthy soils – any farm’s most important asset. This presentation looks at the latest findings and recommendations from Cranfield’s BBSRC-funded project, which considers the impact of different cover crop rooting systems on various soil properties including structure, porosity and nutrient availability. Trials this season will look at a range of species best suited to reducing soil resource losses and enhancing crop growth.
Sarah De Baets, lecturer plant-soil systems, Cranfield University.
- Crop establishment – it pays to be precise: Precision drilling of cereals using variable seed rates, based on soil type and previous yield data, can improve crop yield and quality; optimise seed utilisation and boost profitability on every suitable hectare. There are a number of systems available, but how do you go about selecting the best for your farm?
Matt Ward, agronomist and services leader, advisory and agronomy business, Farmacy.
Sponsored by Yara
- Times 11.30-12.40pm on days one and two
Session chairman: Mark Tucker, agronomy and business development manager, Yara UK.
Over recent years crop nutrition has grown to be the number one area where farmers are demanding more information to build their knowledge. This, coupled with it being such a significant investment and linked to numerous environmental issues, makes being mediocre not good enough, according to session chairman, Mark Tucker.
“The crop nutrition seminars have always sought for excellence in key topic areas. This year is no exception and once again brings experts together to address both agronomic and environmental issues currently at the heart of many discussions with efficiency a thread common throughout.”
- Implications of the Clean Air Act: A look at the greenhouse gas intensity of cropping and the importance of nitrogen fertiliser. It is important for the industry to work together using benchmarking to encourage best practice and the value of agronomics to demonstrate the benefits and prevent on-farm penalties.
Daniel Kindred, head of agronomics, ADAS.
- Evidence-based approach to crop nutrition: Building on new evidence based on grain benchmarking (some of which was supplied by delegates attending last year’s CropTec Show and the work of the Yield Enhancement Network, Yara’s Natalie Wood will discuss the detail of a new approach to nutrient application to minimise losses while maximising profitability in the process.
Natalie Wood, arable agronomist for UK and Ireland, Yara UK.
- Navigating the right course for quality water and profit: What is a realistic target for nitrogen use efficiency to realise optimum yield and profitability while minimising leaching? Rothamsted’s Professor Keith Golding will offer some solutions, including the uses of nitrogen loss inhibitors, to help you select the optimum application rates for your farm in order to achieve both targets.
Professor Keith Goulding, sustainable soils research fellow, Rothamsted Research.