20-06-2012 03:55 AM | News, Shows and Events

Cereals 2012: Wealth of advice proves a strong draw

Cereals 2012: Wealth of advice proves a strong draw
Strong attendance figures at Cereals 2012 have underlined the event’s importance in

keeping the arable sector abreast of the latest developments and advice.

A total of 25,800 farmers, agronomists and other industry professionals passed through

the gates at Boothby Graffoe, Lincolnshire, on 13th and 14th June.

It was an excellent result given the inclement weather leading up to Cereals followed by

dry and sometimes sunny conditions during the event itself, which may have kept some

visitors away with work on the farm, said event director Jon Day of Haymarket


Attendance was about 4% down on last year’s record but well ahead of 2010. Describing

the figures as very healthy, Mr Day added: “Professional farmers and key decision

makers are as hungry as ever for knowledge, and 493 exhibitors, the largest number

ever at Cereals, provided a wealth of information to help them take their business


“We were also delighted to welcome back agriculture minister Jim Paice, whose

presence reflects farming’s renewed importance on the political agenda.”

Despite buoyant commodity prices, much advice was aimed at containing climbing costs

and protecting against the impact of uncertainty over the euro, the latter point being

aired during an HSBC forum with Mr Paice on Wednesday morning.

Increasing problems in the eurozone would affect discussions on the size of the EU and

CAP budget, Mr Paice said. “Many member states are feeling the squeeze and the UK is

not alone in saying that should be replicated in the EU budget.” The UK’s stance was to

reduce the budget over its seven-year lifetime rather than overnight, he added.

The government had made no plans for a collapse of the euro, he said. “We don’t

believe as an entity it will fail.” Given the importance of the EU for UK exports,

colleagues were “as heavily engaged” as others in Europe to find a way forward.

On a brighter note the UK government was maintaining pressure on the European

Commission’s controversial greening proposals. Mr Paice believed progress was being

made on Entry Level Stewardship being accepted as a greening measure.

Allan Wilkinson, head of agriculture at HSBC, principal sponsor of Cereals 2012, urged

farmers to reassess budget forecasts.

Returns could be hit by nearly a third on an average combinable crops farm. The recent

reduction in the sterling/euro exchange rate to 80p could reduce single farm payment

receipts by 8% while upward pressure on machinery, fertiliser and rent could increase

costs by 15%. On the plus side markets were moving in farmers’ favour.

Those attending Cereals would have helped prepare the way, he added. “The event has

gained a well-deserved reputation for offering the technical and business information

forward-thinking farmers need to hone their business. We are proud of our association

with it and look forward to Cereals 2013.”

A line-up of some of the most influential and knowledgeable individuals in the sector

ensured crowds packed the four sessions held at the Arable Conference at Cereals, in

partnership with the Oxford Farming Conference. Topics included food versus

environment, raising crop output, new entrants to farming and CAP reform.

Mike Gooding, chairman of the 2013 Oxford Farming Conference, was delighted that so

many people attended, adding that it reflected the mood of optimism as well as the

challenges that lay ahead.

Key messages were the need to push ahead with plans without waiting for CAP reform

and for a more holistic approach to farming, he said. “Overall we are in time of change,

and with change comes opportunity. It was encouraging to hear DEFRA say it was

important that the trajectory of change does not hinder competitiveness.”

Hundreds of combinable and root crop varieties took centre stage at the event. Further

crop plots demonstrated the latest technology and agronomy advice from weed control

to the SDHI fungicides, which proved their worth on the Velcourt stand in the first really

testing disease year since being commercially introduced.

New R&D initiatives were announced, with HGCA revealing a £2.6m investment in a

four-year R&D programme to help UK soils meet increasing demand for arable

production, including work on soil variability, organic matter and cultivations.

Agrii unveiled a multi-million-pound expansion in applied agronomic research,

development and technical support, creating new R&D centres and many additional plot

and field demonstrations.

New marketing partnerships were also outlined. LEAF struck a deal with ADM to

increase use of LEAF-Marque oilseed rape, RAGT announced a buyback contact with

ADM Milling for its group 3 variety Torch for 2013 and Senova said Allied Mills would

pay a £10/t premium over Group 1 rates for spring wheat Mulika.

Nuffield Faming Scholarships used Cereals as a springboard for a new arable award,

sponsored by HGCA and open to candidates in the arable sector and related industries.

The next generation of farmers and employees in related industries was also well

represented. The new Careers and Education Initiative at Cereals 2012, supported by

many exhibitors, proved a popular draw. The standard of new entrants was also

highlighted in the Velcourt/Hutchinsons Young Cereals Challenge, which saw the team

from Harper Adams collect the £1500 prize for producing the best plot of winter wheat.

New machinery, including a host of cultivation equipment and drills, was in abundance.

Other key developments included a global launch for New Holland’s BigBaler 1290,

designed to boost throughput by 20%. McCormick showed its new six-cylinder X70

tractors – five models spanning 150-232hp, while Kubota unveiled its new M110GX and

range-topping M135GX machines. John Deere revealed its new 6R Series small and

medium sized tractors, rated from 105 to 150hp.

Massey Ferguson showed two new combines, the five straw-walker Activa 7345 S and

276hp six straw-walker 7347 S.

More than 50 of the latest sprayers were demonstrated in the Syngenta Sprays and

Sprayers arena, including Horsch’s self-propelled PT 270, Berthoud’s new Raptor ‘Front

Cab’ sprayers fitted with a hydraulically elevated cab and Tecnoma’s FC laser sprayer

with 3200 to 5200-litre tanks.

Cereals 2013 will take place at Boothby Graffoe, Lincolnshire on 12th and 13th June.


30-06-2012 18:24 PM | Posted by Dr Ijaz Rasool Noorka
Yes, a wonderfull event. I represented University of Sargodha, Pakistan. I am cereal breader and I enjoyed very much the latest innovation in wheat, wheat farm machinery and information.

Wishing you the best for next event

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