Could crop varieties that cope in extreme environments thrive in the UK? Would “no-till’ practices from the altiplano work below sea level on the fens? Would on-farm processing from other geographies work here? At a time of great economic, political and environmental change, looking outwards can provide sources of inspiration and innovation.
Science is global and so is agriculture therefore despite our nominally regional focus, we also help our members look beyond the boundaries of the east of England and indeed the UK itself. This openness is creating opportunities for joint ventures overseas.
Earlier in July we held an event looking at sub-saharan Africa, and later this year we are supporting Agritex 2017 in Hyderabad, India.
Agri-Tech Week provides an opportunity to showcase members’ innovation activities and top quality agricultural production on an international platform and we are delighted that María ‘Pilu’ Giraudo is our key note speaker at REAP. Winner of the Kleckner Award from the Global Farmer Network, Giraudo is coordinating policies for sustainable development at the Ministry of Agroindustry for Argentina so she will be interested to hear about the work in this area.
In addition to members from across the UK, we are also working hard to provide a warm welcome to those from overseas. One of our most recent members, Scarab Solutions, has pioneered biological pest control innovation in South America. Use of our information and contacts will help embed them in the wider UK agri-tech ecosystem as they build their UK activities.
As our membership has grown beyond the borders of the east of England, we are aware that it may be logistically difficult for them to engage in person at the level they would wish.
So, keen to ensure that maximum value is derived from our events, we provide reports, speaker contact details and slide decks after the event, as well as a list of those who attended, with an offer to make introductions.