New business-research partnership to boost farm efficiencies

L-R Cyril Cappe, Bim Afolami

British agriculture needs to become more efficient – and one way to do that is to improve nutrient efficiencies both in crops and livestock, according to Timac Agro UK. And that requires investment – in research, development, and knowledge transfer.

In order to meet those demands, it has relocated its head office to Rothamsted – the oldest agricultural research station in the world – where it can develop new technologies, open its field trials to visitors, and benefit from innovative research partnerships.

Speaking at the official opening of the firm’s new office, Cyril Cappe, general manager at Timac Agro UK, said: “We are developing new technological solutions for tomorrow. Agriculture needs to be more efficient and sustainable and we’re offering customised solutions to enhance the soil mechanisms, to ensure the plant is fed as per its needs, and to improve livestock health and productivity.”

By relocating to the Rothamsted Centre for Research and Enterprise (RoCRE), Timac Agro UK will be able to set up demonstrations on the facility’s 400ha farm, featuring different fertiliser products and biostimulants, and examine their effect on wheat, oilseed rape, barley and grass. It has also sponsored a four-year PhD project on the genetic variation and chemical control of tillering in wheat.

“There are many strands to improving farm efficiencies,” said Mr Cappe. “Our staff are meeting farmers every day to understand their needs, so they can recommend the right products. And we need to be able to manufacture and deliver those products, while developing new technology – in conjunction with more than 90 R&D organisations worldwide – to create solutions for tomorrow. Finally, we need to make those solutions accessible to farmers as quickly as possible. Being part of RoCRE helps us to deliver all of those strands.”

Local MP Bim Afolami formally opened the new offices on 25 January, and said the partnership was a great example of the Industrial Strategy in action. “This is it. A partnership between a research and development centre and a dynamic, global pioneering company… a fantastic ecosystem of research, development and real-life improvement to people’s lives,” he said. “This is putting in place what we need in Britain, and I’m happy to do all I can to help.”