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Spelman puts farming at heart of economic recovery


25,300 visitors attended the 2010 Cereals Event at which Caroline Spelman, Defra Secretary, boldly stated that the new coalition Government is putting farming and the green economy at the heart of Britains economic recovery. Her comments came the day after her colleague Jim Paice promised a Cereals Event audience a cut in the red tape farmers have to endure with the formation of an industry-led taskforce focused on this intent.

Cereals Event Director Jon Day said: I’m really pleased with the vibrancy and content of the 2010 event. Robert Law was a superb host, is a great ambassador for the farming sector and a man that we are proud to be linked with. The event has had its challenges this year with Chrishall Grange, near Royston being a new site and with the introduction of park and ride, but the exhibitors delivered another packed and dynamic technical showcase. The event has earned a deserved respect amongst wider publics including, importantly, the politicians; to have our two leading sector heads Caroline Spelman and Jim Paice announce two important policy intentions just show the standing of the Cereals Event in the industry.

Allan Wilkinson, Head of Agriculture for the Events Principal Sponsor HSBC said that this was a most successful Cereals 2010 with a realistic and most positive assessment about the opportunities ahead. We were delighted to host Secretary of State Spelman’s first speech to a farming audience. HSBC Agriculture is very pleased to be associated with the event, and to be involved in so many constructive discussions for the future. It is a great platform to reinforce our commitment to the sector as a whole.

HSBC also brought a bit of celebrity to the event with a Question Time session chaired by the BBCs John Humphrys. The panellists under the Humphrys spotlight were Cereals host farmer, Robert Law; NFU President, Peter Kendall; HSBCs Mark Berrisford-Smith and Farmers Weekly Editor, Jane King.

This years event welcomed an array of new varieties, agrochemicals and machinery, as well as the all-new Arable Conference held in conjunction with the Oxford Farming Conference. Sponsored by the BBSRC, HGCA, JCB and the RSPB, the Conference explored the science needed for the sectors future and the need for farmers to embrace the Campaign for the Farmed Environment.

Commenting on the Arable Conference, the Oxford Farming Conference Chairman Christine Tacon said: The sign of a good conference is the quality of the speakers, the audiences questions and the attendee numbers; Id give all three a big tick for the Cereals Arable Conference. It was a new venture for the Oxford Farming Conference to work outside Oxford, and outside January, but we are an educational charity and we saw this as an opportunity for letting more people hear quality debate about the industrys big issues. My thanks go not only to the sponsors who paid for the venue, but also to the speakers and my fellow directors, who all gave up their time for nothing, to bring Oxford to Cereals.

Within the Conference marquee a Young Advocates debating competition was run on the 10th June, it was open to UK agricultural colleges and was won by Angharad Evans and Jess Saunters from the Royal Agricultural College.

In the crop plots, amidst the 135 varieties on show, the HGCA launched their R&D review which is encouraging farmers to have their say in how the HGCA invests levy payers funds into future R&D. NIAB TAG announced a new research strategy which the company says will be more focused on key areas where we can make a difference and respond to the changing needs of growers.

New agrochemicals were high profile with plots showing Syngentas new IZM fungicide, Bayer Crop Sciences new Xpro fungicide and Dows pyroxsulam herbicide Broadway Sunrise. Bayer also launched their PoCKET plan, a five-point approach to preserving the effectiveness of autumn herbicides including Atlantis.

The supply chain was also represented at Cereals with Weetabix present and Warburtons announcing a five year extension to their UK milling wheat contract through Openfield. Contracts are currently worth 172 million to British farming and the two companies set their expectation that this will rise to 312 million before the end of 2016. Joining Openfield on their stand was DHL Supply Chain who were discussing the progress of the logistics partnership that they set up with Openfield 18 months ago.

For machinery enthusiasts the Syngentas Sprays & Sprayers Arena was a focal point for 52 trailed, mounted and self-propelled sprayers from over 23 manufacturers.  Amazone launched its largest ever 6600 litre capacity trailed sprayer. In addition, the much anticipated Challenger RoGator 600 self-propelled sprayer range made its debut at the Cereals Event. On other machinery stands, JCB launched the revamped 3000-series Fastracs, Simba launched two new FlatLiner models designed for high horsepower tractors, Sumo announced its new LDS subsoiler and Gregoire Besson unveiled its new Combimix one pass stubble cultivator.

The 2011 Cereals Event will be held at Patrick Dean Limited at Boothby Graffoe, near Lincoln on the 15th and 16th of June 2011.


The Cereals Event

  • The Cereals Event is the leading technical event for the UK arable industry with over 64ha of stands and live demonstrations including Crop Plots, Working Demonstrations, the Sprays & Sprayers arena and Renewables, an area specially dedicated to renewable energy, biofuel and non-food crops.
  • Over 400 leading suppliers are already preparing to keep visitors up-to-date with the very latest products, advice and information; offering a complete one-stop service from seeds to sprayers, crop varieties to cultivation equipment, fertiliser to finance.
  • For more details go to
  • The Cereals event is organised and presented by Haymarket Exhibitions Ltd.
  • Farmers Weekly and Crops are the media partners for Cereals.

HSBC Agriculture

HSBC Agriculture is Principal Sponsor of the Cereals Event.  HSBC Agriculture provides a specialist service to agriculture and agribusiness customers throughout England, Wales and Northern Ireland with a team of over 50 dedicated managers that concentrate exclusively on the needs of farmers and growers.

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