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March 2019

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AHDB SmartHort 2019

AHDB SmartHort 2019

Event date: 
Wednesday, March 6, 2019 - 10:00 to Thursday, March 7, 2019 - 15:00

AHDB SmartHort 2019 is a two-day conference dedicated to driving innovation into horticulture. Guest speakers from around the world will be sharing some of the most impressive and exciting technological developments that could change the way you grow, and examining the potential of such technologies in light of current labour shortages. It is an opportunity to discover the latest high-tech advancements, meet the people behind the innovation and find out how to invest in the technology that could make a positive impact in your business; connecting innovators with the horticultural industry.

Location:

Crowne Plaza Stratford-upon-Avon
 
Bridge Foot
 
Stratford-upon-Avon
 
CV37 6YR
 
For more information please click here
 
 
 
Climate change and agriculture: all you need to know in a day

Climate change and agriculture: all you need to know in a day

Event date: 
Wednesday, March 6, 2019 - 09:00 to 17:00
This conference will be an overview of the impacts of climate change on agriculture and the range of options available to cope with the changes. It will also address the impacts agriculture has on the climate and the options available to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. If you want to get to grips with the state of the art in agriculture, food supply and climate change, then this conference will tell you all you need to know. In a day.
 
Climate change and agriculture and the food supply chain are tightly interwoven. On the one hand, agriculture is a significant contributor to emissions of greenhouse gases (somewhere in the range of 10-20%). On the other hand, agriculture will be seriously affected by a changing climate. While there could be disruptions of many kinds, worryingly, the main impact is expected to be a larger number of extreme events such as droughts and storms making it harder for farmers to produce food consistently. In rich countries this may affect consumers’ prices, but in poorer countries its a matter of life and death. Meanwhile, a fast-growing, more affluent and increasingly urbanised population is switching to diets rich in animal products; and the tendency to build on the most productive farmland as cities expand continues. Food production and the food supply chain must keep pace with these multiple challenges.
 
However, there are things that we can do to reduce emissions, adapting to the changing climate whilst increasing production. Some of these solutions are technical (e.g. plant breeding, precision agriculture or livestock diets that generate less methane); others are managerial (e.g. irrigation management) and some are sociological (e.g. changing consumer behaviour). For uptake of the solutions to be successful, government policy must encourage sustainable approaches at the individual, national and global levels.
 
Attendees
This will be an ideal opportunity to meet others and generate connections and partnerships and will be of interest to the following groups of people:
  • Members of all parts of the food supply system, for example, those involved in agriculture, crop protection, machinery, processing and retail.
     
  • Specialists in any one area of the AgriFood industry or of climate research who want to build a more general knowledge across the whole spectrum.
     
  • Those starting out in research careers or who conduct research at the fringes of climate science.
     
  • Those who are concerned with the rhetoric of constant negativity and want a positive story to tell.
     
  • Those with a particular interest in plants or animals will be able to place their own research into the context of the other.

 

Location: SCI, London,

More information can be found here. 

06/03/2019 - 09:00 to 17:00
 
 
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BGS BSSS Winter Meeting - Improving grassland performance: managing soil structure and organic matter

BGS BSSS Winter Meeting - Improving grassland performance: managing soil structure and organic matter

Event date: 
Tuesday, March 19, 2019 - 09:15 to 16:15
Improving grassland performance: managing soil structure and organic matter aims to highlight the importance of soil structure and organic matter and discuss how managing for both can bring benefits.  A range of speakers from different backgrounds, both scientific and farming, will ensure an interesting day with plenty to discuss.The day will include a short practical session on evaluating soils as well time for discussion.
 
Invited speakers
Jenni Dungait (Independent Consultant) - The importance of soil organic matter for soil quality
Katya Klump and Abad Chabbi (INRA, France) - Grazing management for soil organic matter and structure
Samuel Clarke (Clarke Farming Partnership Ltd) - Benefits of grassland in arable systems 
Paul Newell-Price (ADAS) - Managing soil structure in UK grasslands
Hein Korevaar and Hein ten Berg (WUR, Wageningen, Netherlands) - Soil testing, nutrients and soil quality
Rosemary Collins and Christina Marley (IBERS) - Approaches to breeding forages for improved soil structure
 
Call for posters
Do you have work that you would like to share and discuss?  We would like to invite poster submissions from anyone with work on all aspects of soil organic matter, structure and management. It would be great to have posters from all sectors of BGS - science, commercial or farmer – to strengthen our science into practice theme. A two-minute slot to describe your poster is a regular feature – will you accept the challenge to keep to time?!  For details on how to submit a poster click here.
The event is open to members and non-members.  Members of BGS and BSSS receive a discount on the attendance fee.  

Location: Arden Hotel & Leisure Club, Coventry Road, Bickenhill, Solihull, West Midlands B92 0EH.  

More information available here 

19/03/2019 - 09:15 to 16:15
 
 
Future proofing with Miscanthus - a farm walk

Future proofing with Miscanthus - a farm walk

Event date: 
Thursday, March 21, 2019 - 09:15 to 15:15

Book your place here. 

The business case for Miscanthus continues to strengthen in the face of rising uncertainty in the farming sector, due to attractive long-term contracts available and secure markets for the crop.

 

Lincolnshire grower, AHDB Monitor Farmer and Miscanthus advocate, Colin Chappell, manages 647 hectares of land along the River Ancholme in Brigg and grows 26ha of Miscanthus on unproductive fields. Colin will be opening his farm on 21 March to those keen to explore the benefits of the crop on a breakfast Miscanthus farm walk, hosted by Terravesta and run in partnership with the CLA.

 

“British farmers are stepping into the unknown. Our subsidy will disappear and Miscanthus has numerous positive attributes including long-term financial security, robust growing markets and environmental benefits,” says Colin.

 

“With Miscanthus you have to take a long-term view and look at the guaranteed returns available from an upfront investment. Farming is shifting rapidly, and we must change our approach if we want to stay viable.”

 

Colin supplies Miscanthus specialist Terravesta with whole bales which fuel Brigg Renewable Energy Plant, under a mile away from his farm, on a long-term contract. Terravesta has a 14-year contract with the power station, which in turn has long-term government support.

 

“Miscanthus is a hardy perennial crop, with an average return of £562/ha over a 15-year period, and long-term fixed price index linked contracts are available with Terravesta to grow and sell it. It takes approximately 4-5 years to make the money back but by year 5 growers are looking at approximately £700/ha net margin,” says Jacob Duce from Terravesta.

 

The benefits of Miscanthus far outweigh the upfront investment says Colin: “I don’t worry about blackgrass on the fields of Miscanthus, the leaf litter and high canopy combats it. The crop is low input, it’s not time consuming, it’s harvested in the spring when the rest of the farm is quiet, it’s carbon negative, it teems with wildlife and I can get 13 tonnes/ha easily on poor grade land, and that’s from a crop planted in 2006. Due to improved rhizome quality and planting techniques, new crops now have 90% establishment on average and are likely to yield at least 15 tonnes/ha.”

 

To book and find out more about the open day host, Terravesta, visit our events page.

Location: Brigg, Lincolnshire

21/03/2019 - 09:15 to 15:15
 
 
 
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The Wonders of Woodchip

The Wonders of Woodchip

Event date: 
Wednesday, March 27, 2019 - 10:00 to 15:00

Venue: The Cross Barn, Odiham, Hampshire, RG29 1JX

This workshop will explore some of the many practical uses of woodchip on farms. Including the management of on-farm resources for woodlchip. We will explore and learn about different ways to use woodchip on a farm; including as a soil improver, woodchip compost, animal bedding and as a source of fuel. 

The day will finish with a tour of the Hampshire Woodfuel Cooperative's woodfuel hub at Down Farm.

More information and to book available here

27/03/2019 - 10:00 to 15:00
 
 
 
 
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