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IAgrE Award

Marion King
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Marion King

IAgrEThe Institution of Agricultural Engineers (IAgrE) offers a £1000 prize fund for the best articles or broadcasts on the application of engineering within the land based sector – which encompasses agriculture, horticulture, forestry, amenity and environment.

IAgrE is the professional body for engineers, scientists, technologists and managers involved in the land based sector and introduced the award in its 75th anniversary year to celebrate and reward articles that highlight the vital role of engineering in meeting the requirements of modern food and energy production.

Entry details here

Deadline: Friday, May 6, 2016



2017 IAgrE Award winner Andrew Blake (left) with IAgrE chief executive Alistair Taylor

The 2017 Institution of Agricultural Engineers Award for articles with an engineering theme was presented by IAgrE chief executive Alistair Taylor at the Cereals event on Wednesday, 14 June.

Winner of the 2017 IAgrE award was Andrew Blake, (pictured above left with Alistair), for his article Tackling tramline 'river' losses, published in Tillage magazine.

Judges said Andrew submitted a "well-written piece with good in-field shots of various systems that tackle an engineering problem many farmers prefer to forget".

They added: "The clear explanation of some clever but simple engineering has real potential to impact on everyone’s water quality, or reduce the clean-up costs.

"The article is likely to encourage technology uptake and is an excellent piece on what is a significant issue for modern agriculture."

IAgrE Award Runner-Up Adam Clarke with IAgrE chief executive Alistair Taylor

Runner-up for the 2017 IAgrE award was Adam Clarke (pictured above with Alistair) for his article Closed transfer systems offer salvation for pesticide products, published in Farmers Weekly.

Judges said Adam "simplified a complicated issue and offered practical solutions in a piece of broad interest to anyone spraying crops today".

They added: "This was a very comprehensive and balanced review of the technology currently available in this new area.

"Each system was clearly described and appraised on its merits.

"The use of the panel of experts to independently appraise the systems was helpful and added credibility to the article."


Both of the articles that emerged as winner and runner-up for the 2016 award described high technology solutions, one poised to have a significant role in agriculture and one already in widespread and growing use.

The winners received their prizes and award trophies from Alistair Taylor, chief executive of IAgrE, the Institution of Agricultural Engineers, whose award celebrates articles and broadcasts that highlight the role of engineering in agriculture and other land-based industries.

Alistair Taylor + Mike DonovanThe winning article by Mike Donovan (right in picture), describes a driverless, cabless, diesel-electric tractor that is the first dedicated autonomous agricultural vehicle to become available commercially. It is manufactured and sold in the United States.

Published in Mike's Practical Farm Ideas magazine, the article describes the development of the system.

The judges commented: "Mike's article brings to the readers attention what could become a very real alternative to the complex and costly tractor systems currently available, you made a tidy job of describing what the systems are all about and the advantages they could offer."

Alistair Taylor + Louise Impey

Freelance Louise Impey received the runner-up prize for her in-depth article on precision farming and how it is being used to good effect on UK farms. It was published in Crops magazine.

The judges said Louise's article was extremely interesting and well put over, topical with good case studies.


Read Mike's winning article here.

Read Louise's article here.


BGAJ IAgrE Award 2016 - winner BGAJ IAgrE Award 2016 - runner-up


Andy Collings (above right) scooped the 2015 Institution of Agricultural Engineers Award with an article entitled The Brains Behind Engine Operation. It was published in Profi.

Alastair Taylor (above left) of the Institution of Agricultural Engineers presented the award to Andy at the 2015 Cereals event.

Judges said they were impressed by the way the article took a technical topic and explained it in a clear and understandable way, making a difficult subject accessible and appealing to a large number of readers.

The piece contained good, sharp facts throughout and finished with a useful summary, said judges.

Runner-up was Olivia Midgley for an article called What does the future hold for the wind energy industry? It was published in Farmers Guardian.

Olivia's article was praised for its thorough research and level of detail, which meant she provided a comprehensive look at the topic. Again, it was a piece that appealed to a wide audience.














BGAJ IAgrE 2014 - Newbold + PennyAn article on the use of a wood-fuelled burner providing heat for drying grain was the 2014 winner in the Guild's IAgrE 'Engineering in Agriculture' journalism award.

Written by Emma Penny for Arable Farming, the article covered technical issues and the economics of grain drying using renewables technology through an on-farm interview with a pioneer of this approach.

As one judge noted: “The text sets out everything well, covering problems encountered and solutions found; it also reflects the contribution of BGAJ IAgrE 2014 - Newbold + Cousinsengineering solutions to exploiting renewable energy.

The runner-up, David Cousins, took the prize for a Famers Weekly article describing a day in the life of a worker on a tractor assembly line.

“This well-constructed story involved good research and history, and provided interesting quotes from long-time workers, as well as useful facts,” said the judges. “It was also an easy and very entertaining read that gives a flavour of the atmosphere on the production line while describing a process that could have come across in rather worthy but dull fashion.”

BGAJ IAgrE 2014 winnerThe winners received their cash prizes and commemorative plaques from fellow Guild member Andy Newbold in his capacity as immediate past president of the Institution of Agricultural Engineers. 

The awards were judged by farmer James Hunter, past IAgrE president and former John Deere service manager Peter Leech, Dr Clare Butler Ellis, head of Silsoe Spray Applications Unit, NIAB-TAG, current IAgrE president, Mark Kibblewhite, and 2013 winner, freelance Peter Hill.


Read Emma's winning article by clicking the image.






BGAJ IAgrE award 2013 - Peter Hill + Paul MillerAn article on the benefits of varying cereal and oilseed rape seed rate within fields and the equipment needed for GPS seed drill control was selected for the first IAgrE journalism award.

The article, published in Crops and written by machinery freelance Peter Hill (left in picture), described research into the technique and gave guidance on the control softare and equipment growers need.

"This was a well written article providing a wealth of technical detail, giving a clear view of the issue and supported by facts and quotes from a range of sources," said the judges.

The panel comprised Clare Butler-Ellis, head of NIAB-TAG's spray applications unit, Silsoe; Prof Mark Kibblewhite of Cranfield University; Peter Leech, former area training manager for Europe at John Deere; and Tim Price, NFU Mutual communications executive, representing the Guild.

BGAJ IAgrE award 2013 - Oli Mark + Paul MillerThe runner-up award went to Farmers Weekly machinery reporter Oli Mark for a feature describing a robotic milking system. The judges considered it a very readable and clear account of one manufacturer's system, including farm experience.

Prof Paul Miller of NIAB-TAG, represented IAgrE at the Guild's Cereals Event Bangers'n'Beer function.

Read Peter's winning article here.

Read Oli's runner-up article here: p1 p2.

Images: Kevin Milner

IAgrE Award 2013 - winning article

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