New thinking was in abundance at REAP 2016 and we’ve captured the key points in our post-conference report, launched today. It is clear that for agriculture to realise its full productive, economic and environmental potential, we need to make changes – however it can be difficult to imagine how to do things differently.
The REAP 2016 programme was designed to bring together experts from agriculture, as well as other industries and other geographies, to inspire us with new perspectives. From challenges to manage soils more sensitively, to robotics, predictive crop modelling and pest forecasting and management, REAP 2016 brought together some of the opinion formers from the UK and beyond.
A new crop disease warning system being developed by Bayer CropScience can detect disease at the point of infection up to three weeks before the symptoms are seen. This early…
Innovation starts with understanding the problem. By creating opportunities to get farmers involved earlier in agri-tech developments – in both the lab and the workshop – Agri-Tech East has stimulated…
A new early warning device for Septoria, yellow rust and brown rust that gives farmers a three week window for deciding whether to spray or not is one of the…
Robotics, big data, precision engineering, smart water management and plant science are some of the areas where the Agri-Tech East business cluster has significant competitive advantage according to an independent…
Save the date: REAP 2017: Wednesday 8th November 2017
Agri-Tech East REAP Conference 2016:
INNOVATION FOR AN AGRICULTURAL REVOLUTION
Held at Wellcome Genome Campus Conference Centre, Hinxton, Cambridge, CB10 1RQ
REAP 2016 was an inspirational conference that investigated how technology drawn from other sectors and radical new thinking has the power to create transformational change for agriculture.
The keynote speaker was Gary Zimmer, biological farmer and president of Midwestern BioAg who is internationally recognised for his passion and commitment to improving farming through creating and maintaining healthy soils. Click here to read an interview with Gary.
- Technologists from BT, Fujitsu, Lockheed Martin and PA Consulting explained how innovations used in other sectors could be adapted for agri-food industry to provide radical new approaches.
- Bioscience has also progressed at a pace and Professor Sir David Baulcombe, head of the department of Plant Sciences at the University of Cambridge, discussed with Christoph Graf Grote, Operations Director of Spearhead International Ltd, and Julian Little of Bayer Crop Science how developments in plant and soil science will have a disruptive impact on current agricultural practices
- Young researchers presented highlights of their work in a series of lightning pitches.
- There was an exciting range of demonstrations – including including two robots.
- And the popular ‘Start-up Showcase’ featured some of agri-tech’s most exciting entrepreneurs.
Together we looked beyond the current situation of incremental improvement and discussed how to make the step-change that will revolutionise the industry.
With phrases such as “productivity gap,” “reliance on flow of migrant labour” and “shortage of technical level skills”, one might think the recently published Green Paper (“Building Our Industrial Strategy”) is describing the UK’s agriculture sector.
While the words “agriculture” and “horticulture” (not to mention “agri-tech”) are entirely absent from the Green Paper, many of the themes are at the heart of the technological future of our industry.