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Advances in Breeding for Agriculture – New Tools for New Solutions

Thursday 23rd September 2021 @ 1:30 pm - 5:00 pm

New genomic engineering approaches are offering a new window of opportunities to tackle pressing issues in agriculture, from disease resistance to sustainability and welfare.

We have seen a growing range of different techniques develop that are revolutionising the way advantageous traits are incorporated in a timely, precise, and controlled manner in breeding programmes of crops, livestock, micro-organisms and insects.

Accompanying these new emerging techniques is a timely opportunity for the government to review how these techniques are regulated. The much-anticipated findings from the recent Defra consultation on new genetic technologies are due out soon.

Why attend?

Join us for the afternoon as we get an update on recent advancements in the latest breeding and genetic tools that are helping harness new and ancient traits across different sectors of agriculture, and explore the regulatory landscape for their management and application:

      • Roslin Institute has shown the ability to use gene editing to provide immunity from disease, preventing contagion of respiratory disease in pigs
      • SRUC is researching novel breeding techniques in cattle to reduce their environmental impact
      • James Hutton Institute is harnessing important traits from the potato genome to improve disease resistance breeding
      • Tropic Biosciences is using a gene editing technique to speed up trait acquisition and help growers address critical challenges in protecting crops, increasing their resilience to adverse events
      • Beta Bugs is creating improved breeds of black soldier fly to enhance animal feeds, using the insects’ own metabolic pathways to create proteins for food ingredients, bio-materials and fuel
      • Biocleave is using single-cell organisms as bio-factories for the synthesis of semiochemicals used by plants and insects for self-defence and communication

Who should attend?

This event is relevant to anyone working in agriculture and associated sectors with an interest in how emerging genetic technologies are shaping up breeding programmes across the industry. This may include:

      • Livestock farmers interested in how these new approaches can make a difference to the welfare of their animals.
      • Farmers and advisors from other sectors interested in the potential of these approaches in the development of more sustainable and resilient crops and insects.
      • Researchers and scientists, to spark their thinking on how the regulatory landscape can stimulate or stifle their developing innovations in this area.
      • Policy makers & law firms for an insight into the range of emerging technologies.

Come and join an informative and inspirational meeting of minds.

3 BASIS Points Available

Read more about new genomic technologies

See our Agri-Tech Briefing page: Gene editing consultation – what does it mean for agri-tech?

Fermenter Biocleave
Insect protein: Beta Bugs black soldier fly and eggs
Advanced breeding technology to save the banana at Tropic Biosciences


13.30    Welcome and Introduction

Chair: Jon Clarke, Head of Business Development, John Innes Centre


13.40    Clostridium: Teaching an old bug new tricks

Nathan Fairhurst, Commercial Operations Manager, Biocleave


13.55    Working at the next frontier in breeding: Black Soldier Fly, a farmed insect

Thomas Farrugia, CEO, Beta Bugs


14.10    What can new breeding technologies bring to sustainability and welfare in farmed animal breeding?

Helen Sang, Personal Chair of Vertebrate Molecular Development, Roslin Institute, University of Edinburgh


14.25    #PhenotypeIsKing

Mike Coffey, Professor of Livestock Informatics, SRUC


14.40    Panel discussion


15.00    BREAK


15.20    Bringing British Gene-Editing Innovation to the Tropics

Gilad Gershon, CEO, Tropic Biosciences


15.35    From the potato genome to disease resistance breeding

Ingo Hein, Senior Research Scientist, James Hutton Institute


15.50    Panel discussion


16.30    Closing Comments


Jon Clarke, JIC - Agri-TechE CEA speaker

Jonathan Clarke

Head of Business Development,
John Innes Centre


Nathan Fairhurst, Biocleave

Nathan Fairhurst

Commercial Operations Manager

Read more…

Thomas Farrugia, CEO, Beta Bugs

Thomas Farrugia

Beta Bugs

Helen Sang, Roslin Institute

Helen Sang

Personal Chair of Vertebrate Molecular Development,
Roslin Institute

Mike Coffey, SRUC

Mike Coffey

Professor of Livestock Informatics,

Gilad Gershon, CEO, Tropic Biosciences

Gilad Gershon

Tropic Biosciences

Ingo Hein, Senior Research Scientist, James Hutton institute

Ingo Hein

Senior Research Scientist,
James Hutton Institute

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Thursday 23rd September 2021
1:30 pm - 5:00 pm
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