Loading Events

« All Events

From Farmer to Pharma—and Beyond

Thursday 14th May @ 10:00 am - 5:00 pm


Edward Antil recommended the cultivation of cannabis in his Observations on the Raising and Dressing of Hemp (1777), saying “Hemp is one of the most profitable productions the earth furnishes in northern climates…”

The use of plants for regulated therapeutic use and other applications is growing worldwide and represents a major opportunity for growers to produce higher value crops. However there is still a lot of uncertainty for potential growers around access to varieties, the agronomic management, market opportunities and regulatory constraints surrounding a commitment to embrace them as part of the rotation.

We will also be looking at the innovations in processing and where the future demand is likely to be for pharma, fibre and oils and the plant parts which are likely to be of the highest value. Importantly, how is the business model going to work and how – and in which directions – is the money going to flow?

This is your opportunity to meet the key players across the value chain and learn more about what is involved in the broadacre and controlled environment production of hemp and cannabis, new variety development, processing solutions and needs, regulatory requirements and potential routes to market.

09.30     Arrival and registration / coffee

10.00     Welcome and Introduction

George McBride, CEO, Hanway Associates

Keynote Address

10.10     How can hemp work as a tool to achieve the EU Green Deal

Lorenza Romanese – Managing Director, European Hemp Growers Association

10.40     From Seed to Field – The Crop Perspective

Breeding and Agronomy

Chair – Robin Wood, CEO Elsoms

Stable genetics and straightforward agronomy are key to helping farmers maximise the economic benefit of growing alternative niche crops. This session will explore the current landscape for hemp and cannabis genetics in the UK, as well as provide some insights into the latest thinking around the agronomy and management of the crop.

Hemp – The Crop of Opportunity?

John Barrett, CEO, Sentry Farms

Title TBC

Chloe Lockhart (NFU Combinable Crops Advisor)

11.45     Adding Value Through Processing

Chair TBC

Once the crop is mature and harvested – what next? Who are the markets for the crop and how is the value extracted? Which parts of the crop are the high value and how do growers maximise the potential for post-harvest processing? We hear from experts looking at extraction, application in the pharmaceutical industry and other applications about the downstream processing potential.

Redefining Cannabis: An Introduction into the Health and Wellness Canabidiol Market

Hannah Skingle, CEO, Dragonfly Biosciences

The world’s first off-grid mobile supercritical fluid extraction hardware: opening new doors

Alex Novitskiy, CEO, NovaExtraction

Title TBC

Henry Fisher – Co-founder and Chief Scientific Officer, Hanway Associates

13.00     LUNCH

14.00     Regulation and Market Insights – Capturing the Value

CHAIR – Chrissie Freear, Director, PWC

The regulatory landscape around production of hemp and cannabis means that professional advice and investment is needed to help those wishing to enter the value chain. This session will provide an overview of the current regulatory position, and give insights into the market potential and trends which may act as drivers for new innovation.

14.15     Title TBC

Robert Jappie, Head of Cannabis Law, Ince

14.30     CBD and Hemp products: Fad or the Future?

Tim Philips, MD CBD-Intel

Title TBC

George McBride, Hanway Associates

15.00     Investing in Hemp for Commercial Success

CHAIR – Charles Whitaker, Managing Partner, Brown & Co

Clarity on the potential investment models around the use of high value niche crops with multiple potential applications is urgently needed. In this session we will hear from experts who will be sharing their insights around the risk/reward balance for all those in the hemp value chain and understanding the investment landscape necessary for commercial success.

15.05     Land to Brand – Growing a British Champion

Xan Morgan, Director, Equinox International Holdings Ltd

15.20     Title TBC

Alex Brooks, Investment Analyst, Canaccord Genuity

 15.35     UK Hemp in a Global Context

Peter Shippen, Founder, Britannia Bud

 15.50     Panel discussion

 16.00     Closing comments

16.10     Networking and coffee

17.00    Event close and depart

Speakers at this event will bring insights and expertise from a wide range of organisations and institutions – some of the speakers include:


Alex Brooks, Canaccord Genuity

Alex Brooks

Senior Analyst, Canaccord Genuity

Alex Brooks is an experienced capital markets professional, working in energy, resources, sustainability and materials for more than 20 years in a range of roles. He has spent much of the past two years building the Canaccord franchise in cannabis in Europe, where we have done three significant transactions (EMMAC, Brains Bioceuticals, and Bridge Farm) as well as presenting at numerous conferences and events. Canaccord is a multi-sector mid-market broker, and is the largest fundraiser for the cannabis industry worldwide.

Alexander Novitskiy, CEO and co-founder, Nova Extraction

Alexander Novitskiy

CEO and Co-Founder, Nova Extraction

Alexander has a PhD in clean chemistry from the University of Nottingham for his work with Professor Sir Martyn Poliakoff on supercritical fluids as a replacement for hazardous solvents. He then spent over 9 years in financial industry before starting Nova Extraction with his co-founder Sergey.

Nova Extraction sells off- and on-grid supercritical fluid extraction machinery. Their proprietary hardware offers unique possibility of on-site CO2 extraction of perishable material.

Chloe Lockhart, NFU

Chloe Lockhart

Combinable Crops Advisor, NFU

Chloe is from North Warwickshire and has grown up surrounded by agriculture from a large farming family. Chloe has worked on an arable farm for many summers between school and university and still dabbles when required or when withdrawal symptoms kick in!

After graduating with an Agronomy degree from Newcastle in 2016, Chloe went on to do a technical adviser role for a fertiliser company, matching nutrition to field and tissue tests, formulating recommendations and learning how to achieve optimum results with precise inputs.

Moving into agricultural policy, Chloe started as the combinable crops adviser for the NFU in HQ at Stoneleigh and in this capacity has worked specifically with industrial hemp, driving the NFU’s position and lobbying to make the crop more accessible for UK farmers. It is absolutely vital that growers have access to as many options as possible to expand the rotation and diversify businesses in the current political and trading uncertainty.

Hannah Skingle, COO, Dragonfly Biosciences

Hannah Skingle

Chief Operating Officer, Dragonfly Biosciences

Schooled in the world of business, Hannah topped the Management Tripos at King’s College London and holds a Master’s in Management from LSE. During the latter, her final project focused on innovative industries and how diversity is key to encouraging their development – and she has put her thesis to the test at Dragonfly by building a fresh-faced team in their early 20s.

Hannah progressed at Dragonfly from Business Development to COO within a year, and she has played an integral role in growing Dragonfly from the back-end over the past three years.

A seed to sale company, Dragonfly produces vegan, organic, GMP-approved and GMO-free CBD extract. With large-scale production capacity and state of the art technology, it’s set to be Europe’s leader in Cannabidiol.

John Barrett

CEO, Sentry Limited

John is a Director of Sentry Ltd., having worked in the business for the last 22 years. He oversees the management of farms across East Anglia and Kent. He has been working on hemp for the last 18 months, gaining insight into understanding the challenges of licenses, growing, harvesting, drying and marketing the crop.

Lorenza Romanese, MD, European Industrial Hemp Association (EIHA)

Lorenza Romanese

Managing Director, European Industrial Hemp Association (EIHA)

A veteran policy advisor and communication manager at European level, Lorenza has led EIHA’s efforts in Brussels since February 2019. She has worked with a number MEPs to propose hemp reforms to the Common Agriculture Policy in the European Union and other EU hemp related policies. Lorenza previously advised interests in the oil and gas sector, and led the European Association of Independent Winegrowers. She is a native of Italy and graduated from the University of Gorizia with a Master of Arts in European Affairs.

Robert Jappie, Ince

Robert Jappie

Partner, Ince

Robert Jappie is a Partner at Ince, specialising in Cannabis Law and Regulation. Since he launched the UK’s first dedicated Cannabis Law department in May 2018, Robert has become a leading and well-respected legal expert within Europe’s fast-growing cannabis industries. With the legalisation of medicinal cannabis and CBD supplements rolling out across Europe, Robert has become the leading legal authority on the developing regulatory environment both here in the UK and in Europe.

He currently acts for several established CBD brands, Licensed Producers, Medicinal Cannabis companies and distributors, advising on the full range of regulatory and commercial issues facing the sector.

Robin Wood, Deputy Chairman, Elsoms

Robin Wood

CEO, Elsoms

Robin has had a lifelong career in horticulture and agriculture after gaining a degree in horticulture at Wye College. Prior to joining Elsoms, Robin spent time with ADAS at both Stockbridge House and Kirton experimental stations being involved in field vegetable research before joining Elsoms as Trials and Brassica Crop Manager. Robin moved and joined Horticulture Research international (HRI), working at both Kirton and Wellesbourne before returning to Elsoms where he is now Deputy Chairman.

Tim Phillips, Managing Director, CBD-Intel

Tim Phillips

Managing Director, CBD-Intel

Tim is managing director of CBD-Intel, a business intelligence service providing professional, independent market analysis and regulatory tracking for the growing cannabidiol sectors in Europe and Internationally. He is also managing director of a sister publication, ECigIntelligence, which is a leading source of independent data for the e-cigarette and vaping sector globally, providing unbiased information to numerous leading international companies together with government regulators such as the FDA and the UK government.

Tim is a UK-qualified attorney, having worked at the European Commission, Herbert Smith, BSkyB, AOL Europe, and as director of public affairs at Betfair as it went through its £1.5bn IPO in 2010. He was also a partner in a New York venture capital-funded startup in the diamond sector. Tim qualified as a lawyer at the College of Law, London, and holds an MA in Geology from Oxford University.

Xan Morgan, CEO, Equinox International

Xan Morgan

CEO, Equinox International

Xan is CEO and Co-founder of Equinox International, a Land-to-Brand British cannabis company. Equinox are developing several cultivation and production projects across the UK, Europe and internationally, as well as two British Champion brands: OXON, the Oxford medical cannabis brand and Mr NICE, the quintessential lifestyle cannabis brand.

Xan spent 11 years as a founding member of Bluewater Bio, an international water and wastewater company. Xan’s family business, Morgan Motor Company, have been manufacturing hand built British sports cars for more than 110 years.

From Farmer to Pharma—and Beyond

The use of plants for regulated therapeutic use and other applications is growing worldwide and represents a major opportunity for growers to produce higher value crops.

This is your opportunity to meet the key players in the value chain and learn more about the agronomy of these crops, new variety development, processing solutions and needs, regulatory requirements and potential routes to market.


Programme tbc.


This event is £50 for members of Agri-TechE, and £85 for non-members. Please note the fee is non-refundable for cancellation within 5 working days of the event.

Use the link on the top right of the event listing to book - members will need to log in or create an account in order to access the discounted rate.

To find out more about becoming a member of Agri-TechE, please click here.

Basis CPD points will be available for attendees this event.

Mailing List:

If you would like to hear about what Agri-Tech East is up to, or about other events we run for both members/non-members of Agri-TechE please sign up for our newsletter. We send about 2 emails a month, and you can unsubscribe at any time.


May 14th, 2020 10:00 AM   through   5:00 PM
Rothamsted Research
Harpenden, Hertfordshire AL5 2JQ
United Kingdom
Phone: 01223 760135
Event Fee(s)
Non-Member Fee £ 85.00 + £ 17.00 VAT


Thursday 14th May
10:00 am - 5:00 pm
Event Categories:


01223 760135


Rothamsted Research
Rothamsted Research
Harpenden, Hertfordshire AL5 2JQ United Kingdom
+ Google Map