Cereals agronomy exhibitors preview plots

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Cereals exhibitors gathered at the new Thoresby site on 20 April to view their crop plots and discuss plans for the event on 13-14 June.

With 6ha of plots growing a wide range of crops, there was plenty to see, and Jonathan Backhouse, arable project manager at Cereals, said they are growing well so far. “We had a kind autumn and good conditions for drilling. It was a kind winter up until the period after Christmas when we had some late frosts,” he said. “Recent rainfall has been welcome on the sandy land here.”

Mark Carter, co-owner at BioNature, is exhibiting at Cereals for the second time. “Last year we had a real success and so much interest. This year we’ve raised our game and have trial plots of oilseed rape (OSR) and wheat,” he said.

“We are looking at where we use Delta – nitrogen in a special form which encourages rooting, tillering and stem strength. It is applied at T0, T1 and T2, saving extra passes. We can tell differences in evenness of wheat and branching of OSR already.”

KWS will showcase its ‘wheels’ of winter wheat, winter barley, spring wheat and spring barley at Cereals, a feature which proved popular last year. New Recommended List spring wheat varieties Alicium and Harsum, and new RL spring malting barley variety, Curtis, will also be on display at KWS’s stand, said the firm’s technical specialist Olivia Potter.

“We had brilliant success last year at Cereals – it was the first time we were back after a break. It was really good for getting farmer contact and we are looking forward to that aspect this year.”

As well as cereals, there will also be trials of sugar beet, including Conviso Smart, treated and untreated for weed control, said Martin Brown, AgroServices manager at KWS. “We also have a virus yellows tolerant variety and a very exciting upcoming variety that’s tolerant to cercospora.”

NIAB is demonstrating options to support more resilient future arable systems. Visitors can look at a diverse range of the UK’s under-utilised and novel crops that may become more popular over the next few years, said Stuart Knight, director of agronomy at NIAB.

“With five herbal grazing ley mixtures alongside buckwheat, quinoa, grain maize, durum wheat, hybrid rye and triticale, growers have the option to view the crops above and below ground in the 20m long NIAB Soil Hole,” said Mr Knight.

Lee Bennett, managing director at RAGT Seeds – a recent returner to Cereals – is looking forward to the event. “We have a bit of everything. We have breeding plots with new and established varieties including wheat Group ones Skyfall and Illustrious and Group four Bairstow, and new two-row winter barley, Orcade. There are also plots containing barley yellow dwarf virus (BYDV) resistant and tolerant varieties.

“It is nice to see what’s out there and meet the competition. Cereals is a great networking event.”

Farmers looking to get the most out of their fertiliser use have access to a new nitrogen efficiency optimiser, widely available across the UK and Ireland for the first time this year, said Alex Nichols, marketing manager at Corteva.

“BlueN is a biostimulant containing a naturally available bacteria that enables crops, including cereals, oilseed rape and maize to fix nitrogen from the air and make it available throughout the plant’s lifecycle. Farmers will be able to view crop plots treated with BlueN and talk to Corteva’s experts on the stand over both days.”

DSV is celebrating its 100th anniversary at Cereals and will be showcasing barley variety, Sensation, which is resistant to BYDV and barley mosaic virus types one and two.

Cereals is always a place where visitors can learn best practice and Cereals host Gregor Pierrepont, partner at Thoresby Farming and Estate, is also looking forward to the social element, where visitors can catch up with familiar faces.

“I’m incredibly honoured and excited to play a part in Cereals, which has been a key part of the farming calendar for decades.”

  • The two-day event is being held at a new site this year – Thoresby Estate in Nottinghamshire – on 13-14 June. www.cerealsevent.co.uk.

 Editors’ notes

The Cereals Event is the leading technical event for the UK arable industry, with live demonstrations and areas dedicated to agronomy, technology, machinery, business, education, environment and renewable energy. Sister event to Fruit Focus & SIMA, over 400 exhibitors, sponsors and demonstrators take part in Cereals with the very latest products, advice and information. It provides visitors with a complete one-stop service from seeds to sprayers, crop varieties to cultivation equipment, and fertiliser to finance.


Marianne Curtis: 07443747808

[email protected] or www.agri-hub.co.uk